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Jose Altuve talks about the Tigers who inspire him

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Two Detroit Tigers stars have helped shape the Astros star’s career.

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Houston Astros Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Baseball players are just like the rest of us, in that they have their own favorite guys on the field. All this years’ All-Stars grew up admiring players, and modelling their game after the men they watched in person and on screen playing the game they love.

Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve is no different. The pint-sized powerhouse has become a superstar in his own right, and a hero to many little leaguers who may one day be called up in the draft, but that doesn’t mean Altuve didn’t have his own role models in the game.

This includes two Detroit Tigers veterans, who Altuve watched in order to bolster his confidence or tweak his game play.

Altuve, at 5’6” is the shortest active player in the majors, and in a sport that sees so many guys towering over six feet, it can be hard for the literal “little guy” to believe he has an opportunity. That’s why Altuve liked seeing Ian Kinsler playing in the big show.

As for the swing, one with so much force it often sends Altuve into a pirouette at home plate, well, he modelled it after none other than that of fellow Venezuelan slugger Miguel Cabrera.

Altuve has, of course, become an All-Star and a superstar in his own right, but it’s still interesting to see how his game was shaped by Detroit Tigers players.

Video clips courtesy of MLB Network’s “Play Ball” special.