SAN DIEGO -- The awards continue to mount for the World Series champion Astros, who had six players voted onto the All-MLB Team, including four -- second baseman Jose Altuve, designated hitter Yordan Alvarez and starting pitchers Justin Verlander and Framber Valdez -- on the First Team. Right fielder Kyle Tucker and closer Ryan Pressly are on the Second Team.
Unlike the Most Valuable Player and Cy Young Awards, which are awarded to one player in both the American League and National League, the All-MLB Team recognizes the best player(s) at each position across the Majors, as a whole. Voters were asked to consider only performances during the regular season when casting their ballots.
Altuve had his best season since his 2017 AL MVP campaign, hitting .300 with 28 homers, 57 RBIs, 103 runs scored, 18 stolen bases and a .921 OPS. He finished second in the AL in runs scored, third in OPS and slugging percentage (.533) and fourth in on-base percentage (.387).
Alvarez, who split his time between designated hitter (77 starts) and left field (56 starts), hit .306 with a career-high 37 home runs, 97 RBIs and a 1.019 OPS. He ranked second in the AL in hard-hit percentage (60 percent), on-base percentage (.406), slugging percentage (.613) and OPS, third in home runs and fourth in batting average and runs scored (95).
Verlander won the 2022 AL Cy Young Award and AL Comeback Player of the Year after missing the 2021 season following Tommy John surgery. He went 18-4 with a 1.75 ERA and led the AL in wins, ERA, WHIP (0.83), opponents’ OPS (.497), opponents’ batting average (.186) and hits per nine innings (5.97). His ERA was the lowest by an AL pitcher since Pedro Martinez (1.74) in 2000.
The lefty Valdez had the best season of his career, which included his first Opening Day start and a win in the All-Star Game. He went 17-6 with a 2.82 ERA in 31 starts and set a Major League single-season record by throwing 25 consecutive quality starts from April 25-Sept. 18. He led the AL with 26 quality starts and 201 1/3 innings pitched.
Tucker, who joined Alvarez and Valdez in being named to his first All-Star team this year, hit .257 with 30 homers while setting career highs in RBIs (107) and stolen bases (25). He was the only Major League player with at least 30 homers and 25 steals in 2022. Tucker also won his first career Gold Glove Award.
"When you get awards with a bunch of other big names around the league, you’re like, 'Really?'" Tucker said. “You recognize the guys during the season when you’re playing against them, but when you start getting your name in the awards alongside them, it’s pretty cool. It’s surreal."
Pressly racked up a career-high 33 saves in 37 chances, posting a 2.98 ERA and a .181 opponents’ batting average. He struck out 65 batters in 48 1/3 innings and retired 32 consecutive batters during a stretch from June 25-July 28. Pressly reached career highs in saves, WHIP (0.89), opponents’ batting average, opponents’ OPS (.516), strikeout percentage (35.7 percent) and hits per nine innings (5.59).