The Houston Astros needed Kyle Tucker to click in this lineup and right on cue, he has. Here are three clear signs that he’s here to stay.
With Yordan Alvarez out for the year and a spattering of other short-term injuries—Michael Brantley, George Springer, Alex Bregman—all coming and going, the Houston Astros needed to be able to rely on Kyle Tucker. It was hard enough fielding the likes of Mayfield and Toro, even Jones now, none of whom have found consistency.
But they needed Tucker to do his thing. Only he wasn’t. He was striking out way too much, popping up way too much, his swing looked over-elaborate and unnecessarily long and the worry was beginning to settle in—was he the real deal?
Chyeah. He is. And if you’re still feeling nagging concerns that it might just be a flash in the pan, I’m here to massage away those concerns with some stellar numbers that will make those concerns disappear.
If you can’t just see it with the naked eye, that is. It’s really obvious to just see that Kyle Tucker is a man reborn, but numbers always help the eyes see a bit clearer.
Let’s start with clear number No. 1.
3. Team Leader
Before we even get into the deep numbers, we just need to look at the basic numbers. Kyle Tucker is tied for the team lead in home runs with 5. He’s leading the team with 22 RBIs as of writing, he may get more before this article goes live.
He has the highest slugging percentage outside of Yordan Alvarez, the second-most stolen bases behind just Myles Straw. It’s an ongoing string of things he’s best at, or second-best at. Very quietly, Tucker has become the best hitter in this lineup. He’s rotating around the clean-up and No. 5 holes.
Basically, anything that you want a batter to excel at, Tucker is now excelling at so much that he’s taking over the top spot on the team left and right. You can’t just lead an offensive juggernaut like the Astros and not be here to stay.
But if you need more convincing, let’s move on to No. 2.