October baseball is here and with it we reflect on another 162 games of regular season ball in the books. It’s now time to give out some end of season awards. Here’s my pick for who I feel are the most deserving.
AL MANAGER of the Year
Buck Showalter (Baltimore Orioles)
Now this should be damn near self-explanatory, but just in case you do need the run down on why Buck should be the hands down favorite let me break it down. Even last year despite being at the bottom of the American League it was evident the change in climate that Showalter brought. The team played harder, they took pride in performance and most importantly they never gave up. Flashforward to the 2012 season and the Baltimore Orioles have gone from just a lucky ‘hot start’ to making their first playoffs in over 10 years. Also, take into account the tough division the O’s play in, even with a slumping Red Sox team and it goes to show why Buck’s takeover of the team should be rewarded.
NL Manager of the Year
Bruce Bochy (San Francisco Giants)
Yes, I said it–Bruce Bochy. Now, I know everyone’s going to be clamoring for more conventional picks like the Nationals’ Davey Johnson or the Reds’ Dusty Baker. Give me Bruce Bochy over everyone else, and I’ll tell you why–not only has he had to keep his team afloat with the loss of Melky Cabrera, but also through the slumping year of Tim Lincecum and having to face and totally revamped Dodgers team. The Giants have proven they’re back to their winning ways which saw them win a world series 2 years ago, but unlike then they’re not backing into the playoffs, they’ve earned admission. I think Bochy’s leadership of the team the last few seasons has really helped establish the team and this is his year to be acknowledged.
AL Rookie of the Year
Ok, let me make this short and sweet: .324 batting average, .397 on base percentage, 35 home runs, 129 runs and leading the league in stolen bases with 49. Enough Said.
NL Rookie of the Year
There’s been an overwhelming case made for Wade Miley of the Arizona Diamondbacks–and I don’t know why. Miley has an ERA over 3 and 16 wins to 11 losses… so I’m not exactly blown away. Bryce Harper has had relatively no competition for the award and has proven to be the most consistent rookie and he’s just 19-years-old. Harper is an all around player that can beat you in almost every way save for on the mound, 144 hits, 97 runs and 22 homers. Sounds like a no-brainer to me.
AL Cy Young
David Price (Tampa Bay Rays)
David Price has the most wins in the American League with 20 and the lowest ERA, at 2.56 if that alone wasn’t enough to get him the Cy Young vote take into account the lack of run support the Rays gave him. Price has battled through a home run happy American League all year long and has elevated his style of play to the point where the numbers all point in his favor.
NL Cy Young
This is hard…really hard: Gio Gonzalez, Matt Cain, Klayton Kershaw…and perhaps more all very deserving. But Dickey’s numbers are at the top in the league in almost every category, take into account the fact his team stinks and that he’s a knuckleballer–and had not 1 but 2 missed opportunities to have a no-hitter. The ride for RA from where he once was to now is a long time coming and he’s been one of if not the most consistent pitcher in the league all year. I give my vote to Dickey.
(I said it)
Simply put, why I like Trout over Cabrera. I like versatility–well-roundness, and when you look at overall numbers Trout has the advantage. If we really want to be prisoners to power and the long ball, and yes even the much talked about Triple Crown then that’s just silly. So, if Miguel Cabrera’s MVP bid is based solely on the triple crown if he were to hypothetically just fall short because of have 1 less homer than Hamilton would people not want to vote for him? Just 7 points separate Trout and Cabrera in batting average–7 points, I can’t make or break a player for such a trivial number. Trout has simply been more valuable to his team, their record with him and how the team vastly improved when he came in speaks volumes to that value. Meanwhile with Cabrera the Tigers struggled year long to get from under the White Sox, who they only over took a week and half before the regular season ended. Give me Trout.
I was hesitant at first to pencil him in as my guaranteed pick as NL MVP but it just makes sense. Posey has become the glue of the Giants and the reason why they haven’t tanked–hence the value. Since the all-star break Posey is batting .383 with a .460 On base percentage ith 47 RBI. Posey is like the NL equivalent to Joe Mauer, but based on looks you wouldn’t think it, but that same quiet sense of leadership is there. Even last year proved it, through his season ending injury the team sunk but with him back they again are on pace to have another huge year. I like Posey,