Southeastern Missouri outfielder Justin Dirden was picked up by the Houston Astros on Sunday.  Major League clubs were able to begin signing undrafted free agents to contracts with a maximum salary of $20,000 this weekend.

Dirden was off to a blazing hot start in 2020 before the season was cut short due to COVID-19.  In 17 games, Dirden batted .414 with 29 hits, 20 runs three doubles, two triples, nine home runs, and 26 RBIs.  He and the Redhawks played at Southern Illinois in their final game of the season on March 11; Dirden batted 1-3, batting in a pair of runs on a double and sac fly in a 6-4 loss to the Salukis.

Dirden redshirted the 2019 season due to an injury but was named Preseason All-OVC.  As a junior, Dirden played in every game for the Redhawks in 2018 and started in 56 of their games.  During his 2018 campaign, Dirden hit .340 with 72 hits, 46 runs, 19 doubles, a triple, 16 home runs, and 68 RBI.


Photo from SEMO Athletics

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