Friday, 30 September 2011

My End-of-season Awards

I'm going to give my awards, and justify why.  I'd like to point out that I'm not just going to sort by any stat (i.e. WAR, ERA, etc.), and give an award based on that.  I'm going to explain a whole lotta reasons why whoever gets my vote deserves it.

AL Cy Young: Justin Verlander.  Big fucking surprise.  Simply put, he was the best pitcher in baseball this season.  I won't acknowledge the .242 babip as an advantage or disadvantage to his win here, nor will I include fip/xfip, because that just kind of happens sometimes.  I don't think he'll ever be this good again, but that doesn't matter at all.  I'm looking at what happened, and not what should have happened.  Honorable mention goes to CC Sabathia, Jered Weaver.

NL Cy Young: Roy Halladay.  Halladay was the second best pitcher in baseball this year.  I feel like it's going to end up as a toss up between he and Clayton Kershaw, but Halladay gets the nod, simply because Halladay put up similarly amazing numbers against a tougher division.  Honorable mention goes to Kershaw and nobody else, because those two separated themselves by miles.

AL MVP: Jose Bautista.  Simple, really.  The best hitter in baseball.  Leader in pretty much everything important (HR, OBP, SLG, OPS, etc.).  Second place, and not by that much, goes to Jacoby Ellsbury, who put together a completely retardedly amazing season.  Anyone who gives 1st place votes to anyone but those two, fuck you.  Ellsbury led the league in WAR, which stems largely from the differences in defense between the two.  Bautista plays RF mediocrely (is that a word), while Ellsbury plays a good CF.  The problem is that defensive metrics are too volatile to include in a single season.

NL MVP: Matt Kemp.  I'm honestly having a hard time coming up with anyone other than Ryan Braun that even comes close here.  Cool.

AL ROY: Jeremy Hellickson.  This one was close.  Pineda would have won, as that first half of the season was so ridiculous.  He kind of got figured out a big over the second half, and I'm sure the innings caught up to him, so he lost to the more consistent Hellickson.  HM: Dustin Ackley, Brett Lawrie, JP Arencibia, Mark Trumbo, Jemile Weeks, Pineda, Desmond Jennings, Alexi, Ogando, Eric Hosmer.... You can see where I'm going with this.  Everyone has pros and cons: Hellickson and Pineda are starting pitchers, and are thus more valuable than the others.  Arencibia plays a premium position and hit a bunch of homers, but hit like.222.  Trumbo hit a bunch of homers but is a first baseman.  Some guys didn't play the whole year, as opposed to JPA, Trumbo, Pineda...  There's a lot of ways this one could go.

NL Roy: Craig Kimbrel.  As a reliever, he isn't incredibly valuable (though he was the NL Rookie rWAR leader, and was close in fWAR).  I could certainly see a case for Freddy Freeman, Danny Espinosa, Brandon Beachy, and Vance Worley.  All of these guys were very good, but Kimbrel was straight up dominant until the last month or so of the season, where he was clearly being overused.

For the Bluejays, my awards go to Ricky Romero as best pitcher, Jose Bautista as MVP, and JP Arencibia as ROY.  Lawrie probably could have stolen that away with another month or so of playing time, assuming it remained at the level he was producing before his injury.

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