Brad Penner - USA Today Sports

Should Houston Astros fans “Freak Out” about Alex Bregman's Slow Start?

Should Astros fans worry about Alex Bregman's start to 2017?

It is everywhere, in all the fan pages, on twitter, probably even in your text message inbox. “So much for Bregman being an elite prospect!”.

I have conversations with my friends every single day about the Astros. Potential trades that make sense, previous games, future games, etc. When talking about trades, Alex Bregman always gets brought up, what can the Astros score for him, should they have bit the bullet and traded him in the offseason for an elite pitcher?

Look Bregman hit a huge Grand Slam last night against the Yankees on “Jeter Night”, and Bregman wears number two, and it’s not that simple. Plenty of fans are going on and on about the slow start to his career, the low batting average he is showing and the lack of power he has had thus far.

So far Bregman has been one of the weaker hitters in a great Houston lineup. But that does not mean he is a bust.

Let’s break this down, Alex Bregman is young. Some of the current greats started their careers just as slow as Bregman, if not slower. Don’t freak out, play with facts.

In 2013 Bregman was the recipient of the 2013 Brooks Wallace Award as the nation's best shortstop. Bregman also started all of LSU’s 129 games at SS during the 2014 and 2015 seasons.

He was drafted by the Astros with the number two overall pick in the 2015 amateur draft and quickly rose through the minor league system batting .300, with 24 home runs and 95 RBIs in 146 games.

Since his arrival to the big league club, Bregman has played in 85 total games and has batted .261 with 86 hits, nine home runs 46 RBIs and striking out 80 times. Not exactly setting the world on fire, but how do his first 85 games compare to some of today’s better hitter’s first 85 games?

A quick comparison for you to look at:

Player

G

Age at debut

AB

H

RBI

HR

Avg.

K

Career AVG

MLB

Seasons

Alex Bregman

85

22y

117d

329

86

46

9

.261

80

.261

2

Mike

Trout

85

19y

335d

309

87

43

11

.281

70

.308

7

Bryce

Harper

85

19y

195d

373

86

30

10

.230

72

.284

6

Anthony

Rizzo

85

21y

335d

316

63

33

10

.199

67

.264

7

Freddie

Freeman

85

20y

354d

267

68

27

8

.254

73

.290

8

Xander

Bogaerts

85

20y

323d

304

81

24

7

.266

46

.289

5


Admittedly, Bregman’s strike-out numbers are a little high, but that is something that can be corrected with the right practice and adjustments.

The point of this is not to tell you that Bregman will become a perennial MVP candidate. I am simply presenting to you Bregman’s first 85 games in comparison with the first 85 games of some of today’s best hitters.

A little more food for thought, the five players in the chart above have combined for the following in their careers:

  • Four of the top 10 batting averages in baseball during the 2017 season
  • 9 Silver Slugger Awards
  • 15 All Star Appearances
  • 2 Rookie of the Year Awards
  • 3 Rookie of the Year top two
  • 10 MVP –Top 10
  • 3 MVP Awards

All of that is awesome and again, I am not saying “Look out Bregman is about to become the best player in baseball”. I am saying the Astros value him for a reason, and sometimes players take a little bit longer to establish themselves than others do.

The last thing I want to see is Alex Bregman destroying major league pitching in another uniform. I am asking, no, I am begging you; if you are an Alex Bregman hater, give him time to develop. Let Bregman find his groove. The kid was great for LSU, he ate minor league pitching alive, and now he is finding his way in the MLB.

Please for the love of Astros baseball, give him a fair shot beyond 85 games played.


Astros Insider Top Stories