Houston just keeps producing MVP candidates.
George Springer hit a two-run, go-ahead home run to lead the Astros to a 3-1 victory over the Red Sox on Friday and it’s time to start taking notice of what the Astros’ outfielder is doing.
His eighth-inning homer was his 17th of the year, and at the end of the night he had raised his slash line to .320/.402/.663. Springer is ninth in the American League in batting average, first in home runs, first in RBIs (42) and first in slugging percentage.
Springer has always been a key to Houston’s lineup. When A.J. Hinch put him in the leadoff spot in 2015 the Astros’ offense truly took off, and when they took him out of that spot to start 2016, the team’s hitting struggled. Now this season he is leading off and emerging as an early season MVP candidate.
Over the last nine games, Springer is 16 for 36 (.444) with six home runs and 12 RBIs. Not coincidentally, the Astros have won all nine of those games.
It’s only May so it’s tough to say Springer is a favorite to win the MVP, but it’s very possible the outfielder could be the Astros’ third different MVP candidate in the last three years following Alex Bregman in 2018 and Jose Altuve in 2017, who won the award.