Tom Bogert, CBS Local Sports

Any player is drafted first overall in the MLB Draft is subject to irrational hype.

In an extremely rare case, Carlos Correa may well exceed those expectations. A projected stud, and the future face of his Houston Astros, has somehow, in less than one season, made his potential seem almost limitless.

Correa debuted in the majors last season at the tender age of 20. The Astros took it slow, to siphon off some of the pressure on their prized possession. They buried him at the bottom of the order, limiting expectations as best they could.

Well, it didn’t take long for Correa to climb the batting order. Then he won American League Rookie of the Year, while playing just 99 games. He hit 22 home runs with 68 RBIs and a .279 batting average. Friendly reminder: he did all of this as a 20-year-old rookie.

The phenom joined the JR Sport Brief to chat with JR. When Correa speaks, he’s polite and honest yet politely confident. The rising star may have dropped a playoff guarantee casually, without even knowing that he said it, as if failure simply isn’t an option.

“The city has been great, they support us big time. … So we’re looking forward to that this year, all year long and eventually when we make the playoffs,” said Correa, who’s pleasant tone remained unchanged.

The now-21-year-old Correa always thinks about the game, but never considers his age.

“I don’t feel like I’m the youngest guy out there,” said Correa. “The mentality is just the same. I’m focused, I’m concentrated, and I have a lot of confidence in what I can bring to the table.”

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Off the field, the Astros’ shortstop always makes time for his fans.

“I just enjoy every single moment with the fans, with my family, I sign autographs for everybody and take pictures,” said Correa. “It’s part of the job, it comes with it. You got to be able to enjoy it while it lasts.”

Correa is hyper-focused in-season, a great mentality for a kid who’s been rushed into fame and the limelight to have. He takes his job too seriously to ever jeopardize it off the field.

“I’m not trying to be on TMZ for doing something crazy. You will never see me in the club during the season, that’s for sure,” said Correa. “But you will see me eating a lot of foods in restaurants.”

That is, except restaurants that serve Puerto Rican food. Having been born in Santa Isabel, Puerto Rico, Correa knows exactly where to find the best in Houston.

“At home, my mom cooks really good Puerto Rican food,” said Correa.

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As a fan of repetitive disappointment and frustration, Tom holds Liverpool FC, the New York Knicks and New York Red Bulls near and dear to his heart with occasional joy coming from the New York Giants and New York Yankees.

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