Thursday, October 8, 2009

And the award goes to ...


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Aside from getting to rock a World Series ring, the next best thing to take home at the end of the season is one of Major League Baseball's awards. The Baseball Writers Association of America will soon have their say on who was the best in their respective categories.

Unfortunately, baseball bloggers such as myself do not officially get to cast ballots. Luckily I am a member of the next best thing - the Baseball Bloggers Alliance! Across the blogosphere over the next few weeks, we'll be casting their ballots in their respective leagues for Manager of the Year, Rookie of the Year, and the Most Valuable Player Award. Here are my choices:

American League Manager of the Year

3.) Joe Girardi - New York Yankees
2.) Ron Washington - Texas Rangers
1.) Mike Scioscia - Los Angeles Angels

I imagine that the Writers will favour Girardi and his New York Yankees, however my vote goes for Mike Scioscia. Year in and year out, the Angels are contenders in the American League West, and to manage this team especially after the loss of teammate Nick Adenhart was especially difficult this season. Scioscia is the cream of the crop when it comes to managers in the American League. Now if they could just make it past the Boston Red Sox in the playoffs!

American League Rookie of the Year

3.) Jeff Niemann - Tampa Bay Rays
2.) Noland Reimold - Baltimore Orioles
1.) Andrew Bailey - Oakland A's

This is a very interesting award because almost none of the pre-season favourites to win the ROY like David Price, Matt Weiters or Travis Snider made the cut this year. Although sometimes I think there is too much weight placed on closers, it's very difficult to ignore the stats put up by Andrew Bailey this year. He was thrust into the closer's role very early in Oakland and didn't look back the rest of the way.

American League Cy Young Award

3.) Roy Halladay - Toronto Blue Jays
2.) Felix Hernandez - Seattle Mariners
1.) Zack Grienke - Kansas City Royals

This was another very tough category to choose a winner for. With no clear-cut favourite and no 20-game winner, for me it came down to secondary stats. The writers carry a lot of weight on the win/loss records, but for me that's almost irrelevant when it comes to the best pitchers in the league. Greinke and Halladay both had six plus complete games, and all three had ERA's below 3.00. It might have been because he faced weaker teams in the AL Central, but ultimately my Cy Young award vote goes to Zack Greinke.

American League Most Valuable Player

10.) Zack Greinke - Kansas City Royals
9.) Adam Lind - Toronto Blue Jays
8.) Derek Jeter - New York Yankees
7.) Jason Bay - Boston Red Sox
6.) Evan Longoria - Tampa Bay Rays
5.) Aaron Hill - Toronto Blue Jays
4.) Kendry Morales - Los Angeles Angels
3.) Miguel Cabrera -Detroit Tigers
2.) Mark Teixeira - New York Yankees
1.) Joe Mauer - Minnesota Twins

This decision was a no-brainer; Joe Mauer is hands-down MVP of the American League. Not only did he pick up his third batting title this year, but if not for an injury that kept him sidelined until May, Mauer would have easily cleared 30 HR and 100 RBI. Teixeira started off slow through April and mid-May, and helped carried the Yankees to the post-season. Mauer on the other hand performed consistently well, and it obviously helped that his team made the playoffs on game 163 of the regular season. For those reasons, I give MVP to Joe Mauer.

9 comments:

  1. I agree. I'm totally biased and think Halladay should get Cy Young, but Greinke probably deserves it.

    As Rays fan, I'd love to see Neimann get ROY, he was quite impressive. I'd also substitute Ben Zobrist on the list of MVP for Evan Longoria. Both had outstanding seasons, but I'd argue BenZo was slightly better.

    I have even less say in these things as you.

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  2. Yea Zobrist has to be on that MVP list. I have him tied with Miggy for 3rd place. I don't think Aaron Hill should be higher than Lind.

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  3. I would give the Cy to Doc in a heartbeat, but Greinke and Hernandez were just a little bit better. If not for the unbalanced schedule, I think Halladay would win hands down.

    Honestly, the hardest part for me with these awards was picking numbers 4 through 10 in my MVP list. I probably didn't give it as much consideration as I should have - the only given contenders for me were Mauer, Teixeira and maybe Cabrera. After that, I just filled in who I thought put up the best numbers respectively. But you're right ... Zobrist should probably be in the top 10 somewhere.

    SP, I know Lind's offensive numbers are better than Hill's, but Aaron played the field very well this year and Lind DH'd most of the way. That what the reasoning behind that decision.

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  4. For the Cy, the unbalanced schedule is a big deal, but Greinke also had a weaker team behind him. I can see the points against him, but I agree that he deserves it at the end of the day.

    I think Mauer is obvious too. Just venting here, but I hate the extra push that players on playoff bound teams generally get for the MVP - when a player is surrounded by good players, they should get far more RBIs and better pitches to hit. They generally contribute less as an individual to the team's overall win record. If anything, a player on a team like that should require a HUGE bump in their numbers to show that they were equally talented and that they contributed to the the team's result when compared to the top player on a 4th or 5th place team.

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  5. QJays, I tried to find every loophole I could to give the Cy to Halladay, but there's just no way I could do it with the way Greinke pitched this year.

    I agree with you that sometimes votes are weighted with players who are on teams that are going to the playoffs.

    You raise an interesting point about how players on better teams should have more RBI's. With Teixeira and Bay that is certainly the case, but one interesting anomaly is Aaron Hill - who hit second in the lineup the entire year, yet still clubbed 100+ RBI's. Imagine if Hill was hitting cleanup with the Jays - his RBI totals would shoot through the roof!

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  6. Tough to argue with any of this. Although I'm still trying to wrap my head around the fact that we're using "Zobrist" and "MVP" in the same discussion.

    I fucking hate Tampa.

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  7. I know, it's strange - but I'm sure nobody ever expected Aaron Hill to be up there either.

    I don't think Dave Schultz would appreciate your hatred for Tampa!

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  8. I agree with almost all of your picks, but you've gotta have Ben Zobrist somewhere in the MVP mix. Highest WAR in all of baseball, excellent defense, .408 wOBA. He deserves top 3, minimum.

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  9. Griffin, I totally forgot about Zobrist until after the fact. Now that I'm looking back, Bobby Abreu should probably be in that Top 10 as well.

    Maybe substitute Longoria for Zobrist and Lind for Abreu and that would be a better ballot.

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