In 2019, the Astros’ Alex Bergman was the loot king, but injuries made him look like the shell of his former character.
If you watched any of the Little League World Series in 2017, 2018, or 2019, the majority of kids playing said their favorite MLB player was Alex Bregman. Why was this? It had a lot to do with the fact that Bergman was a fantastic player for the Houston Astros.
In 2017, he had .827 OPS, .927 as All-Star 2018 and 1.015 OPS in Monster All-Star MVP in 2019. However, his popularity was equally tied to how he held himself at the time.
Bregman went blonde for a few matches, shaved off his mustache mid-game and carried his racket to first base after a monster run at home. But, the most memorable was Bergman’s shenanigans in 2019 with his iconic repeated stare at the camera after a big hit. The guy was playing great and having a great time doing it.
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What has happened since 2019?
Burgman in 2021 isn’t the same guy we knew in 2019. He’s had a few injuries in the last couple of years, specifically a broken injury in the 2021 qualifiers which you could see limiting how hard it can be to swing.
He injured his hamstrings and missed 17 games in the short 2020 season, and he missed much of 2021 with a quadruple injury. These injuries have certainly taken a toll on him, as he had the lowest OPS since the junior season in 2020 and 2021, where he managed to score 801 in 2020 and .777 in 2021. This is a significant drop from his 2019 numbers.
Bergman also had to deal with a lot of media attention, as the Astros tag-stealing scandal was released right after the 2019 season ended. This could have taken a toll on him mentally, as there are multiple instances of fans dealing with his case.
The prime example is a video of a young Boston fan asking for a picture with him, and when Bergman politely accepts the offer, the fan calls him a cheater and says some other expletive. You can watch the video here.
No matter how well an athlete can block out that kind of noise, it will have some sort of effect on you, especially with a nice guy like Burgman. Let’s be honest, the Astros get booed and called cheaters at every pitch not Minute Maid Park.
Bregman has become somewhat of a YouTube star recently, and also launched his new salsa brand, Breggy Bomb Salsa. It launched in 2018 but didn’t gain traction until last year as it was doing a lot of marketing and commercials for it. Bregman also married his girlfriend Reagan in late 2020.
The main thing I took away here is that his tricks are gone. There hasn’t been any for the past two years. No camera stares, no big festivities, and no bats carried to first base (my personal favorite). I’m not sure if this is due to the tag-stealing scandal or if it’s just getting bigger. But he doesn’t necessarily need these things to get a swag.
How can Burjuman recover the spoils
He needs to find his 2019 beat shape. Easy like that. He’s always been a great player, and I expect that to continue in 2022. He’ll be perfectly healthy for spring training, so expect his racket to come back to life again.
I am very curious to see that if the bat returns, will deception come with it? According to his Instagram post, he went blonde again in the past week, so it looks like anything can happen.
Bregman has been my favorite Astro since he played Futures in 2016, and he’s still my favorite player today. The 2022 season is Burjuman’s revenge round, and it’s up to him to go out there and take it.