By Scoop Fox
It’s every baseball fans third favorite time of the year: the award ceremonies. This year we saw an abundance of candidates for various categories such as MVP and Rookie of the Year early on. But as time went by, many of those candidates fell off the band wagon due to poor production or injury. The following were the ones that stayed on the longest and performed at a high peak throughout the long season. Now there are some people who are upset at the candidates who won the awards and will squawk about how this player should have won or how a player on their favorite/fantasy team should have one. But hey, it’s not an award ceremony when there are no sour grapes or controversy.
Manager of the Year: AL-Terry Francona of the Cleveland Indians
NL-Clint Hurdle of the Pittsburgh Pirates
There’s a lot of squawk that Jon Ferrell of the Boston Red Sox should have won AL Manager of the Year. Fact of the matter is that if you look up and down that entire Red Sox squad, there’s still a plethora of talent to go with the 3rd highest payroll in MLB ($177.9 million) Last year’s Red Sox squad was hit with injuries, a disillusioned manager, and players who didn’t feel like playing for said disillusioned matter. Terry Francona came into a mess in Cleveland, we all know about that. Then he took that squad that was in the basement, had little star power, and turned them into playoff contenders as well as divisional rivals to the Detroit Tigers. Same thing with Clint Hurdle of the Pittsburgh Pirates. He guided the Pittsburgh Pirates to their best record and playoff berth in 21 years after years and years of being the laughing stock of the National League.
Rookie of the Year: AL-OF Will Myers of the Tampa Bay Rays
NL-SP Jose Fernandez of the Florida Marlins
Those who owned Dodgers OF Yasel Puig on their fantasy baseball team are foaming at the mouth over Jose’s selection. Puig had a great few weeks but then fell back into obscurity within the Dodgers. Jose, on the other hand, continued to dominate. In 28 starts, Jose went 12-6 and led all NL rookies in ERA (2.19), strikeouts (187), opposing batting average (.182) and averaged 9.75 per start. Here’s the kicker, Jose’s ERA was second in the entire NL behind the Dodger’s Clayton Kershaw and his 1.83. With Will Myers, there was no real argument. The Rays were 36-33 before he was called up. Then they went 56-38 afterwards. Combined with leading all AL rookies with doubles (23), extra-base hits (36), and OPS (.831), Myers was well-deserving as 2013 AL Rookie of the Year.
Baseball GM of the Year: Ben Cherington of the Boston Red Sox
Definitely no argument on Ben’s part. He was the architect in rebuilding the Red Sox into World Series champs. Last season, he was handcuffed by Larry Luchino and Co. and watched the Red Sox fall off a cliff. Then Cherington was given the keys and told to do what he felt was in the best interest in the team and he did. By jettisoning bad contracts to the Dodgers last year, bringing in low-risk, high-profit players (Koji Uehara, Mike Napoli, Stephen Drew to name a few), wisely holding onto and using the farm talent (Xander Bogaerts), and bringing in a manager who would back his players like Tito did back in the day, Cherington brought respect back to the Red Sox and turned them into world champs.
Cy Young: AL-SP Max Scherzer of the Detroit Tigers
NL-SP Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers
No arguments here. Scherzer led all AL pitchers in wins (21), WHIP (0.97), had the fewest loss of AL Pitchers with 25+ starts (3), and was 5th in ERA (2.90), and 2nd in strikeouts (277) and opponent batting average (.194). In the NL, Clayton Kershaw got the most strikeouts (232) and had the lowest ERA (1.83) and WHIP (0.92) in both the NL and all of MLB for 2013. Not to mention that opponents could only muster a .195 batting average, 2nd overall in the NL. The Cy Young is awarded to the best overall pitchers in baseball and both Scherzer and Kershaw were not only the best but the most dominating as well.
MVP: AL-3B Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers
NL-OF Andrew McCutchen of the Pittsburgh Pirates
Here come the baseball stat nerds saying that OF Michael Trout got hosed for the second year in a row for AL MVP or that 1B Chris Davis should have won because he hit more HRs (53) and RBIs (138) than Cabrera (44 HRs and 137 RBIs). However Cabrera had a better batting average (.348, OBP (.442), slugging (.636), and OPS (1.078) than Trout and Davis. Not to mention his 94 strikeouts were less than Davis’ 199 Ks and Trout’s 136 Ks. In McCutchen’s case, nobody carried their team like he did with the Pirates. He sported a .317 batting average as well as displaying speed along the bases with his 27 stolen bases and was the catalyst for the Pirates run to their first playoff berth since 1992.
That's it for this week. This is Scoop Fox, signing off.
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