August 5, 2021

Is Jose Altuve Still on Target for 3,000 Hits? (FanGraphs)

There are myriad reasons why the Houston Astros have spent 2020 hovering around the .500 mark, a distinct decline from last season’s 107-win record. One of those reasons is a down season from second baseman Jose Altuve, who has been a key part of the team’s core over the last decade. With .216/.281/.307 line, Altuve is having his worst season as a major leaguer and at age-30, this kind of performance decline is more concerning than it would be if it were just a mid-20s blip. Further complicating matters, at least from a storyline perspective, is the fact that Altuve was a member of the Astros squad that played fast and loose with the league’s policies on electronic sign-stealing. Any Astro from that era who later underperforms relative to expectations is going to be put under the microscope, and with Altuve the big underachiever, his performance is likely to bear a fair amount of scrutiny.

So, what’s going on? There are a few aspects of Altuve’s season that could rightly be passed off as chance-related, but others might serve as signals of decline in the second baseman’s skills. When trying to explain poor performance, one obvious place to look is to see…

Read “Is Jose Altuve Still on Target for 3,000 Hits?” at FanGraphs