HOUSTON - It was quite a season for No. 4. Former All-American outfielder George Springer (2009-11) wrapped up his most successful professional season with the World Series Champion Houston Astros.
If there was an omen to how 2017 would go for Springer, it came in his first at-bat on Opening Day against the Seattle Mariners Felix Hernandez. Springer hit a leadoff home run against the 2010 Cy Young award winner, en route to a franchise record nine leadoff home runs this year.
The 2017 season capped off a career-year for the former Husky, even with an extended stint on the disabled list. Springer set career-highs in average (.283), home runs (34), RBIs (85), slugging (.522) and OPS (.889). The 34 home runs tied a UConn single-season record, tying Walt Dropo's 34 home runs in the 1950 season with the Boston Red Sox.
The 2011 first round pick was voted into his first All-Star Game in Miami, becoming the third UConn player to start an MLB All-Star Game.
The UConn all-time home runs leader (46) scattered his name throughout the World Series record book and secured 2017 Willie Mays World Series Most Valuable Player honors after having a World Series to remember.
The New Britain, Conn. native set World Series records in extra-base hits (8), consecutive games with a home run (4), total bases (29) OPS (1.471) and tied Reggie Jackson and Chase Utley for most home runs in a single Fall Classic (5).
It was not just the total for Springer but the clutch timeliness of his dingers. Springer hit four game-tying or go-ahead home runs in the series for Houston. Becoming just the second player in World Series history to accomplish the feat. His home runs included:
- Game 2: Hit a two-run shot in the 11th inning to put the Astros ahead, 7-5.
- Game 4: Broke up Alex Wood's no-hitter with a solo shot in the sixth inning to give Houston a 1-0 lead.
- Game 5: Hit a game-tying home run in the seventh inning to even the score at 8.
- Game 6: Third inning home run off Rich Hill made it 1-0 Astros.
- Game 7: Second inning, two-run round tripper to break the game open, 5-0.
After the Astros wrapped up a 5-1 win in Game 7 against the Dodgers, Springer became the first UConn player to win a World Series title. Springer also was the first UConn position player to play in a World Series game.
Congratulations to George and the Houston Astros on a historic 2017 season!