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A Towering MVP

Jose Altuve, at 5'6" is a monster, and in my second life, I want to be him. The American League's Most Valuable Player never quits. He is the epitome of determination, of grit, with a never-quit attitude that clearly infects his entire team. More than any other reason, in my opinion anyway, he's the reason why the Houston Astros knocked off the Los Angeles Dodgers. in the 2017 World Series.

He and Justin Verlander, for whom the Astros traded last summer to put them over the top -- which he did. Friday, they jointly received the award as Best Major Leaguer, Post Season.

All during the playoffs, especially when the Astros played the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series, the baseball pundits debated whether Altuve or Aaron Judge, who is more than a foot taller at 6'7" and crushed monstrous home runs all season, would eventually be crowned MVP.

But if you watched Altuve play, you had to be impressed. Here was a young man who just never stopped. He took the extra base when there was an opportunity. As a hitter, he came through in the clutch over and over again, driving in runs, keeping his team in games and in many games during the playoffs was clearly the difference.

Jose Altuve is old school. He's gutsy. He's talented. A total team player. And he's tough.

"That's what I love about baseball," Altuve said, "that every single guy can play the game. "There's not a rule that says you have to be six feet tall to play baseball and become a good player."

During the playoffs, Altuve hit .388 and in 71 at bats got 22 hits, including seven home runs and drove in 14. It was just a continuation of how he played all season when he hit .346 and won the American League batting title.

In the end, Altuve far out-distanced Judge in the MVP balloting by journalists who cover major league baseball., collecting 37 of 40 first-place votes. And after it was all over, he credited his teammates. "They made this for me," he said.

Congratulations, Jose Altuve. You deserve it, and like I said, in my next life I want to be you!

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