No. 2 pick Bregman, Correa reunite
Astros introduce LSU star, who participates in drills and receives advice from rookie shortstop
HOUSTON -- Then just teenagers, Carlos Correa and Alex Bregman met at a baseball showcase, knowing they'd both be prime targets in the 2012 Draft.
Correa, drafted No. 1 overall by the Astros, opted to sign. Bregman, passed over by all 30 teams in the first round after an injury during his senior season, chose to attend LSU. He wore the No. 30 his freshman season to represent that snub.
Three years later, they reunited.
Correa and Bregman -- the No. 2 pick in the 2015 Draft who was introduced by the Astros on Thursday at Minute Maid Park after inking a $5.9 million deal -- were side-by-side throughout pregame warmups. Correa was noticeably hands on, giving Bregman the ground rules and a quick insight into how Houston functions on a daily basis.
"He'll be here one day," Correa said after he finished batting practice. "Just showing him how we do it and the fun we have doing it."
Bregman went through the typical pregame rituals, stretching with All-Star Jose Altuve then fielding grounders at shortstop and second base alongside Correa, who chatted with the LSU product at every down moment.
"We were just talking about baseball and stuff," Bregman said. "What the Minor Leagues are like and what this journey is all about. It's an honor to be able to stand out there by him. Really nice of him to talk to me and it means a lot, it really does."
Before the two young shortstops could reconnect, Bregman was presented with his jersey alongside general manager Jeff Luhnow and director of scouting Mike Elias. Bregman's mother, Jackie, father, Sam, and younger brother A.J. were among the crowd to applaud when he buttoned the jersey and put on the blue cap.
"It is completely surreal," Sam said. "I feel like I'm a 12-year-old kid at the ballpark because I'm so excited to get to watch."
In a Draft class littered with shortstops -- four were taken in the top 10 -- Astros scout Justin Cryer, who signed Bregman, said it was the Albuquerque, N.M., native's baseball IQ and that set him apart.
"I think some of the things he's done on SportsCenter speak for themselves," Cryer said. "His inning-by-inning, second-by-second routine of staying focused and always being in the right spot or always having good body control. Kind of anticipating the next play, anticipating what could happen. He's very good at that."
Luhnow and Elias reiterated they will keep Bregman at shorstop when he ships off to Class A Quad Cities on Friday, and for the foreseeable future.
That could mean Bregman and Correa jockey it out for a starting spot one day. That day is far off, though, and the two insisted there was no such talk on the field Thursday.
"Outstanding player that will help the team win," Correa said. "Hopefully he'll be here soon."