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Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve took home the first MVP award of his career in 2017, beating out Aaron Judge by a sizable margin for the honor.
Altuve winning the award also made him just the eighth player in the past 50 years to take home the MVP award along with the batting crown and a world championship, per the Elias Sports Bureau (via ESPN.com). The others to do the same previously include Joe DiMaggio (1939), Stan Musial (1946), Willie Mays (1954), Mickey Mantle (1956), Dick Groat (1960), Frank Robinson (1966) and Buster Posey (2012).
The 27-year-old hit .346 for the Astros this season, leading the American League for a second straight season and the third time in the last four campaigns. Altuve has consistently knocked around opposing pitchers, possessing a .316 batting average.
Altuve possesses a rare blend of pop and speed especially for a player who stands just 5’6″ tall. He tied his career-high mark for home runs in 2017, posting 24 of them for the second straight year. The Venezuela native also racked up 32 steals, the sixth straight year in which he’s topped 30.
With only two years remaining on his contract, Altuve is almost certainly due to receive a big pay bump following the 2019 season. It’s quite possible, however, that the Astros will sign him to a contract extension before he ever hits the market.