HOUSTON -- When the Rockies and Astros tangle, get ready for some flashy glovework at the hot corner. The matchup boasts two of the premier young defensive third basemen in Nolan Arenado for Colorado and Matt Dominguez for Houston.
The two played against each other during their high school days in California and in the Arizona Fall League two years ago, so Arenado said he was familiar with Dominguez's ability.
"I've known what Dominguez is about for a while, because he's a Cali guy, like me," Arenado said. "That team he was on in high school [Chatsworth High] was stacked. He's always had those sharp reflexes at third. He's a big-time talent and could definitely be an up-and-coming star."
Astros manager Bo Porter has repeatedly labeled Dominguez's defense as "Gold-Glove caliber," and Dominguez has belted out seven homers over his last 15 games to complement his glove work.
Arenado was known more for his bat than his excellent glove at the Minor League level, but the Majors haven't been as kind to him.
Entering Tuesday, Arenado was hitting just .243 with 13 strikeouts in May. But that glove that once helped turn 36 double plays in the Minors has stuck.
Arenado and Dominguez each snagged hard-hit balls off the other's bat during Monday's series opener, drawing audible reactions from the crowd at Minute Maid Park.
"I played against him in the [Arizona] Fall League and stuff, and Nolan's pretty impressive, a pretty good hitter," Dominguez said. "He always makes some good defensive plays. I enjoy watching him play. He's great over there."
Chris Abshire is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.