Most Valuable Player – Alex Bregman
Awarding the team MVP seems to be a formality at this point, but it does lend the opportunity to revisit the meteoric rise of this year’s 2016 Corpus Christi Team MVP: Alex Bregman.
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Bregman was the second overall pick of the Astros in 2015, a compensatory pick awarded to the team after the failed signing of pitcher Brady Aiken. Aiken would ultimately undergo Tommy John surgery before being drafted 13 picks after Bregman by the Cleveland Indians, 15th overall. Aiken is 2-5 with a 5.83 ERA in the minors this season. Bregman, on the other hand, held a .300/.388/.503 slash line split between Corpus Christi and Fresno.
In 62 games with the Hooks, the young infielder had a .975 OPS with 14 home runs, 46 RBI, 42 walks, and 26 strikeouts. He blasted another long ball in the Double-A All-Star game before his promotion to Triple A. Bregman was the best hitter in Double-A, and even better in clutch situations. Bregman had a .353 average with two outs with the Hooks and 1.025 OPS with runners in scoring position.
Bregman’s minor league successes led to fruition in the big leagues in 2016. After a rocky start, Bregman hit .305 with eight home runs and 32 RBI in his final 19 major league games before a hamstring injury that may ultimately end his season. Those that were fortunate enough to see the young shortstop play in person at Whataburger field knew he was really only on loan from the major league team.
Bregman has the talent to become a cornerstone of the Astros lineup for years to come. Not only was he one of the best players in the minors, but he has already cemented himself as one of the best young players in baseball – as well as this year’s Corpus Christi Team MVP.
**Statistics courtesy of MiLB.com and Baseball Reference **