The first of what promises to be a number of postseason accolades for the Astros happened on Monday when rookie outfield/designated hitter Yordan Alvarez was named the American League Rookie of the Year. Alvarez's victory was unanimous. Alvarez, 22, joins Jeff Bagwell and Carlos Correa as the only other Astros to win a ROY award.
The honor caps a meteoric rise for the Cuban-born Alvarez. After spending April and May in the minors where he shredded minor league pitching, he was called up to the major league roster in June. After his call up, he not only demonstrated tremendous power, but uncanny plate discipline and pitch recognition for a player his age.
Alvarez finished the season with a slash line of .313/.412/.655/1.067. He had 27 home runs (besting the previous Astros rookie record held by Correa, 22), 78 RBIs and 28 doubles. He struck out 94 times in 313 at bats and walked 58 times. While he didn't have the same power in the postseason and struggled in the ALCS, he hit .412 with a homer and seven hits in 21 plate appearances in the World Series.
Runner ups included Orioles pitcher John Means, Rays second baseman Brandon Lowe, White Sox outfielder Eloy Jimenez and Blue Jays second baseman Cavan Biggio, son of former Astro great, Craig Biggio.
Three other Astros remain in contention for two remaining awards. Both Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole are finalists for the AL Cy Young Award as is their former teammate Charlie Morton (Tampa Bay). Alex Bregman is a finalist for the AL MVP Award. The Cy Young will be handed out Wednesday and MVP on Thursday.