Bregman brings enthusiasm to first spring camp

Astros' top prospect not worried about future of SS position

February 20th, 2016

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- The hand-wringing Astros fans have done over the future of shortstop Alex Bregman -- who, yes, plays the same position that Carlos Correa will likely have locked up for the next decade -- isn't something the Astros are particularly worried about right now.

Bregman, the No. 2 overall pick in last year's Draft out of LSU, remains a shortstop and will likely be starting at the position for Double-A Corpus Christi this year. As far as general manager Jeff Luhnow is concerned, having to find a place for Bregman to play will be a good problem to have at some point.

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"The good thing about shortstops is, you run into a problem and you have two great shortstops, they can both play elsewhere," Luhnow said. "Usually, the shortstop can play third, second and potentially the outfield. I'm not worried about that right now. Bregman is a great prospect and he's got a little way to go until he gets to the big leagues. And when he's ready for the big leagues, that's when we have to make a decision."

Bregman, who was only beginning his junior season at LSU a year ago, hit a combined .294 with four homers, 34 RBIs and a .366 on-base percentage in 66 games combined at Class A Quad Cities and Class A Advanced Lancaster last summer. He was invited to Major League camp on Jan. 1.

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"I'm just coming in here trying to learn as much as possible and work hard, and trying to apply the stuff I learned during the season," Bregman said. "I'm really looking forward to it. It's going to be my first Spring Training, and to be able to be up with the big guys for a little while is going to be fun."

For the record, Bregman knows the position he plays is out of his control.

"The only thing I have control over is working hard and going about my business the right way, and playing the game how I've always played it," he said. "Everything else will just take care of itself. I'm just looking forward to going out and competing."

The book on Bregman is he's a terrific defensive player with high upside at the plate. He probably won't get much playing time in the Grapefruit League, but manager A.J. Hinch said Bregman passes the eye test.

"He looks like he can handle it," he said. "He's pretty mature. There's going to be plenty of innings and plenty of games to work him in. The more comfortable he looks, the more successful we feel we can be. He's an exciting player."

Bregman is no stranger to Spring Training. Growing up in New Mexico, he often made trips to Arizona to watch Cactus League action when he was younger.

"It was a blast," he said.