Jose Altuve is a superstar. Baseball fans have known this for years.
After guiding the Houston Astros to their first title in franchise history, everyone else is joining the bandwagon.
Through the first four years of his career, the second baseman never hit more than seven home runs in a single season. He hit seven in the playoffs this year alone.
Both of his World Series homers came amid the chaos of extra-inning classics in Games 2 and 5. Although he ceded World Series MVP honors to George Springer, the 5'6" star is a prime candidate to win the American League's regular-season award.
Altuve has led the AL in hits in each of the past four seasons, but the postseason presented him a national platform to reach casual viewers. It appears he earned many new fans.
Following Houston's 5-1 win in Game 7, he checked his phone while speaking to reporters. Per Adam Caparell of Complex, the 27-year-old blamed the distraction on an influx of social media buzz:
Adam Caparell @AdamCaparell
Jose Altuve on why he's been looking at his phone - "I've been checking my Instagram followers. They went up 20,000 in the last 10 minutes."2017-11-2 05:16:35
As of Thursday morning, Altuve has approximately 810,000 Instagram followers.