Astros: Alex Bregman missed far more than Yordan Alvarez
The Houston Astros bats are waking up, but from the standpoint of top-to-bottom dominance, it’s Alex Bregman who is missed more than anyone, even Yordan Alvarez.
The core of this Houston Astros order is changing before our eyes, and it’s getting younger too. Carlos Correa and Kyle Tucker are hitting in the three and four holes, respectively, while Michael Brantly and Alex Bregman, the two who would ordinarily fill those holes, dropped to sixth and injured, again respectively.
It makes the mind wonder what might happen when Yordan Alvarez is back in the lineup, but frankly, it’s not Alvarez we’re missing the most, though he is certainly missed.
Alex Bregman is the man missed more than anyone, and with him now out for three weeks—a huge chunk of the season, we need someone to step up.
Houston Astros must reroute the Alex Bregman void
The problem is, someone has to play third base, and right now those options are Jack Mayfield and Abraham Toro, who have a combined batting average of .240, which is a whole .030+ lower than Bregman’s .272.
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You take Alvarez out of the lineup, you can plug in Brantley, you can plug in Taylor Jones, who’s starting to hit the ball well, you can even slip in Kyle Tucker if you need to. It’s much, much easier to cope at DH, even if your regular DH is the reigning American League rookie of the year and among the most exciting young hitters in baseball.
Yuli Gurriel could play third base, and honestly, that may be the best way to go, letting Taylor Jones slide into first base. His .235 average is probably going to be level than the combined Toro/Mayfield average by the time this article goes live, since Mayfield has just had the one at-bat against the Angels so far tonight.
Plus, Jones has only had 18 career plate appearances, so it’s not like we’ve seen enough of him to make a judgment call one way or the other anyway.
These are the decisions you have to make when you lose all that production at a key position. Ideally, Toro could just live up to his potential, but despite hitting the ball relatively hard through the early parts of this slump, no he’s just striking out a lot and that doesn’t jive.
This is a powerful lineup even without these two studs, but just thinking of what could happen when they get back is tantalizing. Until then, we have Kyle Tucker.