Predicting 2013 Houston Astros’ Team Awards
Astros' 2013 Team Awards
The Houston Astros broke their franchise record for losses for the third straight season, this time going a full 10 games over the 100-loss mark. It wasn’t the prettiest season to watch by any stretch, but despite the increase in losses, this was a much better team than the ones in the previous two years.
With so many rookies coming into the picture, it was bound to be an exciting season for the young Astros. Despite putting up embarrassing numbers, including dropping 15 straight to finish the season, this season largely lived up to expectations. It may have even exceeded expectations, given the breakout performances by a handful of rookies.
The Astros continued their theme of clearing house, and longtime Astros pitcher Bud Norris was the final piece of the former roster to be moved, giving the team a brand new look and a brand new face.
The Astros set several important pieces in place this year, giving Jose Altuve a contract and proving to fans that they are indeed planning to contend sooner rather than later. And even with so many lackluster performances, a lot of Astros’ players took the opportunity to shine and prove to the team that they belong at the major league level.
The MLB may have its MVP, Cy Young and rookie of the year awards, but barring a bizarre twist, they will not even look at the Houston Astros. However, even last-place teams deserve awards, so let’s take a look at the Houston Astros’ team MVP, Cy Young, Rookie of the Year, breakout player of the year and comeback player of the year.
Breakout Player Of The Year
A lot of players could have earned this award. Robbie Grossman and Brett Oberholtzer definitely qualify as 'breakout players', but it was Matt Dominguez who really surprised people.
Scouts never gave Matt Dominguez high marks for his potential offensive, so the numbers he put up this year shattered all expectations. While a .241 average is nothing to write home about, 21 home runs and 77 RBIs definitely are. Dominguez has always been a good defensive third baseman, and he showcased that a lot this year, so the added and unexpected offensive output is enough for him to earn the award.
Comeback Player Of The Year
Jason Castro gets the comeback player of the year honors because he finally put together a nearly complete season so close to being free of injury. Having played 120 games this year, he nearly doubled his game totals since 2010. And after years of waiting, he finally got the chance to prove that he was worth the first-round draft pick the Astros spent on him. Castro hit a respectable .275 and displayed a promising power, hitting 18 home runs and 56 RBIs. 2014 should be a great year for Castro, but injuries continue to be a problem, and a move to first may be the only option to keep him healthy.
Rookie Of The Year
Brett Oberholtzer gets rookie of the year because the Cy Young was such a close race. Oberholtzer had put up three shaky bullpen appearances before becoming the first pitcher since 1980 to make as much of a major impact in the starting rotation in his debut season. As a starter, Oberholtzer finished a misleading 4-5 with a 2.24 ERA
Brett Oberholtzer gave Jarred Cosart a run for his money, but it's impossible to deny Cosart the honor of the Houston Astros' Cy Young. He had the best rookie season statistically speaking since 1914, and his 1.95 ERA across 10 starts is more than enough to get Astros fans plenty excited to see just how good this Houston-area native can get.
Jose Altuve is the face of the franchise, the engine that keeps the team going, and the most consistent player the Astros have in a team brimming with inconsistency. Despite having a down season compared to last year, Altuve finished strong to put up a .283 average with five home runs and 53 RBIs. Every day, one thing Astros' nation could always rely on is that the short-stature of no. 27 would be standing at second and he would put everything he had into the game. This demeanor and production was enough to get Altuve the Astros' first real contract commitment.