Over the next few weeks on Texas Sports Nation, we will analyze the 2018 season of each Astros contributor.
Today: Alex Bregman
In 2017: .284/.352/.475, .827 OPS, 158 H, 63 XBH, 55 BB, 97 K
In 2018: .286/.394/.532, .926 OPS, 170 H, 83 XBH, 96 BB, 85 K, All-Star Game MVP
Analysis: With a brazen bearing and uncanny knack for delivering when the Astros required him most, Alex Bregman delivered a breakout season.
It was — without debate — the greatest year by a third baseman in Astros history and among the best in major league lore.
Bregman is the only player in major league history to hit 50 doubles and 30 home runs in a season while playing a majority of his games at third base. He was Houston's first 100-RBI player since Carlos Lee in 2009. The 51 doubles Bregman hit led Major League Baseball and were the third-most in franchise history.
Premier plate discipline catalyzed Bregman's enormous ascent. In the regular season, he walked 11 more times than he struck out. His 20 percent chase rate was second only to Mookie Betts among American League hitters.
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Betts is almost assured American League MVP honors. Bregman will factor into the top six. Betts, Mike Trout, J.D. Martinez and Jose Ramirez figure to finish ahead of Houston's somewhat polarizing third baseman who carried a sputtering, injury-riddled lineup throughout the season.
Bregman's infectiousness and infatuation for the game endeared him to players across the league. He toes — sometimes blurs — the line between cocky and confident, with the unquestioned ability to back it up.
Bregman set career highs this season in 10 offensive categories and led the Astros in eight different offensive benchmarks. The Houston chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America named him the team's most valuable player.
When he arrived in the playoffs, Boston preferred to walk him than offer him anything to hit — a sign of respect for the extraordinary year he orchestrated. In eight playoff games, Bregman walked 11 times.
Best moment: Bregman stole the spotlight during the All-Star Game in Washington, D.C. In the Home Run Derby, he fell one home run shy of a swing-off with Kyle Schwarber to advance from the first round.
Then, in the All-Star Game, Bregman hit the go-ahead home run in extra innings, lifting the American League to a win. He was the Astros' first All-Star Game MVP.
Contract status: Under team control next season, eligible for arbitration at the end of 2019.
Source : https://www.houstonchronicle.com/sports/texas-sports-nation/astros/article/2018-Astros-review-Alex-Bregman-13352373.php