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Correa celebrates 1-year anniversary of debut

MLB.com @brianmctaggart

ARLINGTON -- Wednesday marked the one-year anniversary of the Major League debut of Astros shortstop Carlos Correa, who went 1-for-3 with a single while hitting sixth in the lineup in a June 8, 2015, game against the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field.

"It went by really fast," Correa said. "It seemed like yesterday I made my debut. It was pretty cool when I woke up today. I saw it was June 8 and I was like, 'Wow, one year in the big leagues.'"

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ARLINGTON -- Wednesday marked the one-year anniversary of the Major League debut of Astros shortstop Carlos Correa, who went 1-for-3 with a single while hitting sixth in the lineup in a June 8, 2015, game against the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field.

"It went by really fast," Correa said. "It seemed like yesterday I made my debut. It was pretty cool when I woke up today. I saw it was June 8 and I was like, 'Wow, one year in the big leagues.'"

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It's been a remarkable first year for Correa, who went on to win the American League Rookie of the Year Award, helped the Astros reach the AL Division Series and settled into his life as baseball's next big thing. He had played in 158 career games entering Wednesday and produced solid numbers, hitting .272 with a .348 on-base percentage, 30 homers, 100 RBIs and 22 stolen bases.

"Last year was a pretty good year, but obviously, you've got to have high expectations, and this year has been OK for me," he said. "It's not where I want to be, but it's a long season. Hopefully, I can stay consistent throughout the year and help my team win ballgames and eventually help my team make the playoffs."

Correa certainly has room for improvement. He needs to cut down on his swing-and-miss rate at the plate -- he entered Wednesday ranked seventh in the AL in strikeouts -- and needs to work on playing cleaner defensively.

"I think the expectations have been sky high, and it's hard for anybody in his shoes to live up to them or exceed them, but he's been remarkable in his year in the big leagues," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "He's done things that we take for granted now, hitting third in the order as a 21-year-old and a 20-year-old last year, playing a premier position at shortstop, being probably the most popular -- probably for all of [the media], and a lot of fans.

"He's really taken hold of the responsibility of being Carlos Correa, and he's handled it with a lot of grace. He'll never be satisfied, so when he does have stretches where he hasn't dominated, he's usually pretty hard on himself, but that's because he wants to be great."

Correa, who won't turn 22 until September, says he wants to play until he's 40. In other words, the best is yet to come.

"I love this game and love to play," he said. "We'll see how the body holds up. Right now the body is fine. I don't know how it's going to be 15 years from now, but hopefully, it stays healthy and I can keep playing."

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, Carlos Correa