Top Astros earn high honors from Houston's baseball writers

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- While Major League Baseball will have to wait until after the postseason to award the best players of the regular season, some of the Houston Astros already learned of their honors a day after the 2018 campaign ended.

The Houston Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America announced the award winners of the 2018 season.

While Alex Bregman emerged in the American League MVP award conversation, there was no question that the third baseman was the man for the Astros. Houston baseball writers named him the Astros MVP of 2018.

Bregman led the team in runs with 105, doubles with 51, home runs with 31 and RBIs with 103, to name a handful of categories.

On the hill, the team's clear cut ace of the pitching rotation, Justin Verlander, earned baseball writer's Astros Pitcher of the Year.

In his 14th season, Verlander boasted a 16-9 record while posting a career-high in strikeouts in a season with 290 over 34 starts. Verlander is also in the AL Cy Young Award conversation.

Max Stassi was leaned on as a dependable offensive force at catcher. In his first full season with Houston, Stassi earned baseball writer's Astros Rookie of the Year.

While Charlie Morton is all business on the mound, the right-handed starting pitcher became one of the faces of the team. Baseball writers selected Morton for the Darryl Kile Good Guy Award as the most affable with teammates, fans and the press.

Elsewhere, baseball writers also named Arizona Diamondbacks infielder Paul Goldschmidt as the Houston Area Player of the Year, non-Astro. The Woodlands High School alum hit 33 home runs to go with 83 RBIs. He also earned his sixth consecutive National League All-Star nod.

And to make sure every part of the game is recognized, Houston baseball writers selected longtime Astros groundskeeper Willie Berry with the Fred Hartman Long and Meritous Service to Baseball Award. According to the team, Berry started working for the Astros as a janitor inside the Astrodome in the early 1970s. He has worked for more than 45 years, and he's earned his stripes for his "meticulous maintenance of the Astros pitcher's mound."
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