With his performance on Friday night, the Vote Jose Altuve campaign can go for more than the All-Star Game. MVP consideration is not out of the question.
"I may be biased, but I think it's warranted," Bo Porter said. "If you give me a vote and the season ended today, he's the MVP of the American League."
"I mean, if he keeps playing like he has so far, I don't see why not," Jason Castro said. "He's a pretty special player and to have someone like that, he's been an integral part of our success this year. I definitely don't see why he wouldn't at least be in the conversation, for sure."
Altuve demonstrated his value to the Astros on Friday. In the first, he singled, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch, then came home on the resulting wild throw to third base. That gave Houston the 1-0 lead. In the fifth, with the Astros down 2-1, Altuve doubled home L.J. Hoes to tie the game. After advancing to third on a sacrifice bunt, he stole home as the Tigers tried to pick off George Springer at first. That gave Houston the 3-2 lead in a game they'd eventually win 4-3. In essence, Altuve somehow helped to manufacture three of the team's four runs in a one-run win over a team that leads the AL Central.
"You look at what he means to our ballclub," Porter said. "When you start talking MVP, you ask yourself the question, if you take that player off that team, where would they be? Lord, I don't want to even think about that. I'll retract that."
That's because Altuve is superlative in so many aspects, not just for the American League, but for all of baseball. He leads the majors in hits and multi-hit games. On top of those two categories, he leads the American League in batting average and stolen bases. And he leads by a decently-sized margin. The next closest average to Altuve's .342 is .328. The next closest to Altuve's 32 stolen bases is Rajai Davis and Jacoby Ellsbury with 21 each. Melky Cabrera's 103 hits is the closest in the American League to Altuve's 111 hits.
Friday's four hits and two stolen bases were just a demonstration of what Altuve's been doing all season.
"I'm somewhat speechless," Porter said. "He's a good player, a really good player. And it's not just the hits. It's all the other intangibles, the game within the game, and just realizing how much he impacts the game."