Jim & Bob's Palatial Baseball Blog

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Post-Season Awards

The BBWAA starts handing out its awards tomorrow. So this seems as good a time as any to share my ballots…

National League MVP
1. Albert Pujols
2. Ryan Howard
3. Lance Berkman
4. David Wright
5. Miguel Cabrera
6. Chase Utley
7. Carlos Beltran
8. Jose Reyes
9. Aramis Ramirez
10. Scott Rolen

Pujols led the league in OBP, SLG, and OPS. If that’s not enough, he stole seven bases. Howard, Berkman, Wright, et al had good years, but not nearly as good as Albert.

American League MVP
1. Joe Mauer
2. Derek Jeter
3. Frank Thomas
4. Manny Ramirez
5. Travis Hafner
6. Alex Rodriguez
7. Johan Santana
8. Carlos Guillen
9. Justin Morneau
10. Jim Thome

For me, this decision came down to Mauer and Jeter. Jeter had a hell of a year, but I’m giving Mauer a slight edge for a few reasons. Mauer had a higher OPS. Both play key defensive positions, and while Jeter is not as good as his cheering section would have you believe, he wasn’t all that bad last year. However, Mauer gets the edge again for being a catcher.

Oh, and there’s my Midwestern bias, too. Hey, at least I’ll admit my biases, unlike certain members of the BBWAA…

National League Cy Young
1. Carlos Zambrano
2. Brandon Webb
3. Roy Oswalt
4. Trevor Hoffman
5. Chris Carpenter

Sure, it’s a homer vote. But the guy finished 16-7 with (as I am constantly reminded) a crappy team. And this despite not winning his first game until 10 May (going 0-2 in his first seven starts). Put him on a good team (or even a semi-decent team like the Cardinals), and he wins twenty easy.

Granted, “What If” games shouldn’t play a part in this stuff (after all, you can reduce that argument to absurdity and say that if Zambrano had gotten everybody out, he’d have 33 perfect games to his credit). But wins and losses aren’t a good way to judge pitchers. Zambrano had a great year, one that will be ignored because he pitched for a crappy team.

American League Cy Young
1. Johan Santana
2. Roy Halladay
3. Justin Verlander
4. Barry Zito
5. C. C. Sabathia

As if there was any doubt. 19-6, 245 K (1st in the league), 2.77 ERA (1st in the league), 1.00 WHIP (1st in the league), .216 BAA (1st in the league). How do you not vote for Santana? I mean, if you’re not an immediate family member or close personal friend of one of the other pitchers?

National League Rookie of the Year
1. Ryan Zimmerman
2. Prince Fielder
3. Hanley Ramirez
4. Josh Johnson
5. Dan Uggla

American League Rookie of the Year
1. Francisco Liriano
2. Justin Verlander
3. Jered Weaver
4. Jonathan Papelbon
5. Joel Zumaya

Rookies are always a tough lot to sort out. I just like Zimmerman better than the other guys. And talk about a great crop of pitchers in the AL. Too bad that two of the top five had the seasons shut down because of injuries. I guess lots of managers abuse their young arms, too…

Managers of the Year
The Super Genius and Jim Leyland

I’ve heard for years that winning is the only thing that counts. If this is true, how can you say any other manager did a better job than these guys?

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