When Alex Bregman digs into the batter’s box at Fenway Park this weekend, some Boston Red Sox fans might wonder “what if?”
The third baseman will man the hot corner for the Houston Astros against the Red Sox in the American League Championship Series, but he could have been on the other side had draft night gone a little differently six years ago. As Chad Finn of The Boston Globe recounted Thursday, the Red Sox actually selected Bregman in the 29th round of the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, but he declined to sign with the team.
“Bregman was a presumed first-round pick entering his senior year, but missed much of the season with injuries, including a broken finger,” Finn wrote. “He made it clear before the draft that he wasn’t going to sign unless he was a first-round pick or got first-round pick money.
“He later said he probably would have signed had the Red Sox taken him with the 24th overall pick. The Red Sox did not, instead selecting — yikes — Deven Marrero. Bregman ended up going to Louisiana State University instead.”
The Astros would later select Bregman with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2015 draft. Two year later, he established himself as a big-league starter, played a key role in eliminating the Red Sox from the postseason and helped Houston win the first World Series in franchise history.
Bregman, now 24, batted .286 with 31 home runs and 103 RBIs and made the American League All-Star team for the first time in his young career this season. The brighter he continues to shine on the diamond, the more he’ll remind Red Sox Nation what might have been.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images