Houston Astros officially lock up team's 'heart and soul' Jose Altuve through 2029

Thursday, February 8, 2024
Astros officially lock up team's 'heart and soul' Altuve through '29
Astros legend Craig Biggio recalled his first impression of Jose Altuve when the newly-extended second baseman first arrived at spring training.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- By rewarding eight-time Major League Baseball All-Star Jose Altuve with a new five-year contract extension, the face of the Astros' franchise is under contract through 2029.

"I feel like Jose is the spark plug for this club," Astros general manager Dana Brown said about Altuve on Wednesday. "He's the heart and soul of this club. When you have someone like that, you want to keep him within that core."

That's quite a curveball from Altuve's entrance into the organization.

After being initially turned away during a tryout in Venezuela as a 16-year-old, he was signed for $15,000 and then spent five seasons in the minor leagues.

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"I remember (Astros legend) Jose Cruz asking me to watch this guy during spring training," former 'Stros infielder Craig Biggio recalled. "He told me to disregard his size and watch him play. Just seeing him go about his business day in and day out, ever since I met him on day one of spring training, I've been a huge fan."

And 13 years later, one of the shortest players in baseball history, who faced some of the longest odds, evolved into the Astros' heartbeat during their golden era.

"I remember I just wanted to do everything possible," Altuve said of his drive to make it with the Astros organization. "Go play hard, get my hits, score some runs just to stay on the team for the next year."

Now it's the Astros making sure Altuve will stay on the team - for the entirety of his career.

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