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Bregman ready for run at Astros repeat

Third baseman's goal: 'Turn Houston into the next powerhouse in baseball'
MLB.com @brianmctaggart

HOUSTON -- Winning a World Series in his first full season in the Major Leagues won't be as challenging as trying to repeat, something no team has done in nearly 20 years. That's why Astros third baseman Alex Bregman has been grinding in the gym this offseason in preparation for Spring Training, which begins in a month.

Bregman's whirlwind offseason, which began with a busy week of interviews and appearances in the wake of the Astros' World Series victory over the Dodgers last fall, continued into the gym and will take him and his teammates to West Palm Beach, Fla., for Spring Training.

HOUSTON -- Winning a World Series in his first full season in the Major Leagues won't be as challenging as trying to repeat, something no team has done in nearly 20 years. That's why Astros third baseman Alex Bregman has been grinding in the gym this offseason in preparation for Spring Training, which begins in a month.

Bregman's whirlwind offseason, which began with a busy week of interviews and appearances in the wake of the Astros' World Series victory over the Dodgers last fall, continued into the gym and will take him and his teammates to West Palm Beach, Fla., for Spring Training.

"This offseason mentality has been, 'Turn the page from last year and let's get after it,'" Bregman said Thursday at Methodist Hospital during a stop on the Astros Caravan. "Brand-new year, let's find a way to bring another one back to this great city."

Video: Ryan, Bregman participate in Astros Caravan 2018

No team has repeated as World Series champs since the Yankees reeled off three in a row from 1998-2000, and the Astros are poised to try to make another long postseason run considering most of their key pieces are back this year. That includes Bregman, who hit .284 with 19 homers and 71 RBIs in the regular season and added two homers off Chris Sale in the American League Division Series and homers off Clayton Kershaw and Kenley Jansen in the World Series, in addition to a walk-off single off Jansen in Game 5.

"When you taste winning the World Series, you want to do that every year," he said.

Bregman, who tweeted a reminder that the championship still has to come through H-town after the Yankees traded for 2017 National League Most Valuable Player Award winner Giancarlo Stanton in December, bristled at the idea the Astros have a chip on their shoulders. Instead, he said the team was eager.

"Super-eager and super-excited," he said. "It's going to be a fun Spring Training. The season starts a little sooner this year, so we've got to amp things up a little bit earlier. It's going to be fun, just returning with that great group of guys, great coaching staff, support staff. Everybody in this back-to-back tour."

The Astros, who still could make an impact addition or two in the coming weeks, will be the favorite to win the AL, along with the Yankees. New York pushed Houston to seven games last year in the AL Championship Series and have added Stanton, but Bregman said everyone will be trying to take down the Astros.

"We're going to look forward to getting everybody's best punch," he said. "I only have one goal, and that's to win the World Series again and bring it back to Houston, and hopefully bring a lot of these in the near future to this city and turn Houston into the next powerhouse in baseball."

Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast.

Houston Astros, Alex Bregman