- Staff Reporter
HOUSTON, TX – The Houston Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America has announced their Astros award winners for the 2019 season:
- Astros MVP: Alex Bregman
- Astros Pitcher of the Year: Justin Verlander
- Astros Rookie of the Year: Yordan Alvarez
- Darryl Kile Good Guy Award: Will Harris
- Fred Hartman Long and Meritorious Service to Baseball Award: Astros PA announcer Bob Ford
The Houston BBWAA also announced that Brian McTaggart will return as chapter chairman for 2020.
This marks the second consecutive Astros MVP award for Alex Bregman, who led the club in numerous categories, including OPS (1.015), HR (41), runs (122), RBI (112), walks (119), OBP (.423) and SLG (.592). Bregman, who is a strong candidate for the AL MVP Award, led the AL in walks and was in the top five in HR, OPS, OBP, SLG, runs and RBI. Bregman was valuable on defense as well, starting 91 games at third base and 59 at shortstop. His .986 fielding pct. at shortstop ranked tied for second in the AL (min. 55 starts at SS).
Justin Verlander has now won back-to-back Astros Pitcher of the Year awards, having also won the honor in 2018. Verlander, who is a candidate for the AL Cy Young Award along with teammate Gerrit Cole, had one of the best seasons of his Hall of Fame caliber-career, going 21-6 in 34 starts with a 2.58 ERA and a career-high 300 strikeouts. In addition to strikeouts, Verlander also set career bests in WHIP (0.80), opponents batting avg. (.172) and opponents on-base-pct. (.219). The highlights of his season included his third career no-hitter on Sept. 1 at Toronto and reaching 3,000 career strikeouts in his final start (Sept. 28 at LAA).
Beginning with his ML debut on June 9, Yordan Alvarez was one of the most productive hitters among all players in baseball, not just rookies. For the season, the Astros record-setting rookie, a strong candidate for AL Rookie of the Year honors, hit .313 in 87 games with 26 doubles, 27 HR, 78 RBI and 52 walks. Alvarez’ 1.067 OPS is the best ever for a rookie, besting the 1.058 posted by Shoeless Joe Jackson during his 1911 rookie campaign (min. 350 PA). Alvarez also led all AL rookies in extra-base hits (53), OPS (1.067), OBP (.412) and SLG (.655) and was second in HR (27) and RBI (78).
Will Harris has been a mainstay in the Astros bullpen and in the clubhouse over the past five seasons. In addition to having an outstanding season on the mound, Harris continued to show the professionalism and accountability he has become known for since joining the Astros in 2015. Statistically, 2019 was arguably Harris’ best season in the Majors as he was 4-1 in 68 relief appearances with a career-best 1.50 ERA and four saves. His 1.50 ERA was the lowest among AL relievers while his 0.93 WHIP ranked 8th. Harris also shined down the stretch, posting a 0.00 ERA in 10 Sept. appearances with a .111 opp. batting avg. (8.1 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 10 SO).
The 2019 season marked Bob Ford’s 26th as the Astros Public Address Announcer. Over the years, his signature, booming voice has become synonymous with Astros games, first in the Astrodome and now at Minute Maid Park. Since joining the Astros in 1994, Ford, a fan favorite, has the distinction of calling all five Astros World Series games. Additionally, including 2019, he will have handled the PA for 10 different postseason runs. A Galveston native, Ford’s recognizable voice has also been heard for many years on radio and TV. His resume includes stints as a DJ on Houston morning radio and extensive voiceover commercials and award-winning projects for PBS, Showtime, Encore and Cartoon Network.
Article sourced from provided press release.