ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – With the Houston Astros Alex Bregman is becoming a star. “I really look up to Alex as an Idol,” said 13-year-old Tyler Hernandez. “I’ve known him since I was six and a half.” Grant Smith is a shortstop for St. Pius X in Albuquerque. He also looks up to Bregman. “What he did shows us that we can make it just like him,” said Smith.
What Bregman did was make it all the way to a major league baseball as the second overall pick of the 2015 draft. Like Bregman before them, Smith and Hernandez are honing their skills at the Albuquerque Baseball Academy. “The Albuquerque baseball Academy has done a great job of getting people seen,” said Bregman. “They get guys out in front of colleges, professional scouts. It’s been huge for the development of New Mexico baseball players.”
Many believe the ABA was instrumental in developing Bregman and getting him to LSU. Ryan Brewer runs the place and will not have any of that credit. “Everybody says you guys created Alex Bregman,” said Brewer. “That’s so far from the truth. We hit him a lot of ground balls, threw him a lot of batting practice and we slapped him on the butt and said great job, keep working.” The work ethic of Bregman is really not a secret.
The fruits of his labor have produced for the Astros during the postseason. He has had an RBI in each World Series game, none bigger than his tenth inning single that brought in the winning run to break a 12 all tie against the Los Angeles Dodgers Sunday night. Bregman’s walk-off single had people all over the country talking and the kids he spends time with during the offseason at the ABA.
New Mexico youth believe they can play in the big leagues one day if they work hard like Bregman.
“It’s just amazing how much he’s worked and how much he has put into this to get as far,” said Tyler Hernandez. “I want to work hard and get to where he is now.”
Grant Smith echoes the same thought. “I see him all the time, not much bigger than I am,” said Smith. “It shows me that if I work hard I can definitely make it to the same level as he is. It pushes me to be a better player.”