Filed under: Awards, Baseball Statistics, MLB | Tags: Brewers, Chase Utley, David Wright, Guillermo Mota, Hanley Ramirez, Jimmy Rollins, Johnny Estrada, Matt Holliday, Mets., Omar Minaya, VORP
Yesterday, I made a post about how silly some of the voters for the AL MVP award were.
Today, we learned that Jimmy Rollins won, and the complaints of yesterday quickly faded away to a new set of complaints.
For example: Jimmy Rollins? He had a great season, sure, but really. His numbers were inflated by Citizen’s Bank Park. His team just barely beat the Mets. David Wright’s play was just as deserving of an MVP award as Jimmy Rollins. You could justify it by saying that the Phillies got into the playoffs, but it’s not Wright’s fault that the Mets didn’t get into the playoffs. According to VORP, Wright was second in the NL behind Hanley Ramirez, who’s team clearly was not close to the playoffs.
Meanwhile, J-Roll was ninth in the NL in VORP. Heck, even teammate Chase Utley had a higher VORP than him.
Both J-Roll and Wright play excellent defense, though J-Roll does it at a more difficult position. However, though they had similar numbers, Wright made nearly 100 less outs in a similar number of at-bats, and his OBP was far higher than that of J-Roll.
However, this year the writers were looking for a good story. What’s surprising is that they found it in J-Roll, when there was such an obvious feel-good story in Matt Holliday. He was fourth in the NL in VORP. His numbers may have been inflated by the Coors effect, but he was clutch and was a key to the Rockies getting to the playoffs. I fully expected him to get all the votes; he was far more deserving than J-Roll.
Thankfully, Holliday got second place by a very close margin, so most of the writers agreed with me, but it’s still disappointing to see him fall second. He may never have another season like this again.
In other news, the Brewers traded Johnny Estrada to the Mets for Guillermo Mota. And boy, did Omar Minaya screw the Brewers over and get exactly what he wanted. Find a catcher? Check. Make sure it’s a short commitment? Check (Estrada is under contract for one season). Lose Guillermo Mota? Check.Omar Minaya, for any faults he might have when it comes to getting prospects into his system, is a shrewd GM. He made a great move here.
Filed under: Awards, Baseball History, Baseball Statistics, Mindless Twits, New York Yankees | Tags: A-Rod, Alex Rodriguez, Barry Bonds, Bobby Abreu, Carlos Pena, jorge posada, Magglio Ordonez, Mike Lowell, Tigers, VORP, Yankees
The punchline here is that they didn’t screw up. The AL MVP was Alex Rodriguez, and he more than deserve it. In fact, he deserved to win unanimously. Did he? No. Why? Because the sportswriters out of Detroit are major homers.
The Detroit Tigers were several games out of a playoff spot. The Yankees barely scraped a playoff spot. In fact, considering how much A-Rod contributed, had he not been on the Yankees in 2007, replaced by an average third baseman, the Yankees would not have made the playoffs. That’s a lot of value that he provides.
There is no excuse for not voting for A-Rod. He did it all – excellent defense; consistent performance; excellent hitting out of an important defensive position, hitting in the clutch. Magglio had a great year; in a typical year he should have won. But A-Rod did not have a typical year; in fact, A-Rod had a historical year. There is a very legitimate argument that A-Rod had won of the ten greatest seasons of all time in 2007, and even an argument that, after Barry Bonds’ 2001 season, it is the second most valuable season by a hitter of all time. A year as historically amazing as A-Rod’s is just a class above Magglio’s year.
There were some other interesting things to note about MVP voting. Mike Lowell… fifth? I’m sorry, but that’s just silly. According to VORP, there were fifteen more valuable hitters in the AL than Lowell. That’s a lot of people.
Jorge Posada ended up sixth behind Lowell. Despite the fact that Posada had the fourth highest VORP in the AL. I mean, catchers who can post and OPS+ of 154 with average defense just grow on trees, right?
In addition, Carlos Pena’s voting sadly disappointed me. The fifth most valuable VORP-adjusted hitter in the AL got ninth place in voting.
Also surprising was Bobby Abreu receiving a seventh place vote. In perhaps his worst season ever, where he barely scrape a 114 OPS+.
Hopefully, the writers will learn. But until then, they make good blog fodder.
Filed under: Alex Rodriguez, Arizona Diamondbacks, Awards, Boston Red Sox, Colorado Rockies, Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Milwaukee Brewers, New York Yankees, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners | Tags: A-Rod, Alex Rodriguez, Bob Melvin, Coors Field, Dustin Pedroia, Eric Wedge, Jake Peavy, Jim Leyland, Josh Beckett, Matt Holliday, Mike Hargrove, Mike Sciosia, Ryan Braun, Troy Tulowitzki
That time of year has come – the playoffs, so it makes perfect sense to try to predict who wins the various awards of baseball. Keep in mind that I am not saying who I think should win, rather I am saying who I think will win. Also, keep in mind that the awards given in the offseason are voted upon before the postseason begins.
Alex Rodriguez. Come on. I don’t have to explain this one, do I?
Matt Holliday probably clinched it by getting that huge hit on the one-game playoff versus the Padres.
AL Cy Young
Josh Beckett had the most wins. Surprise?
NL Cy Young
Jake Peavy. We’re all smart people here.
AL Rookie of the Year
Dustin Pedroia may not deserve it, but he gets the Boston spotlight and the flashy numbers.
NL Rookie of the Year
Ryan Braun. Sorry, Troy. But he edged you out. To be honest, Troy wouldn’t deserve it anyways because he was only an average hitter when you factor in the Coors Effect. But the difference in defense still doesn’t quite make up for it. Smart stats aside, it’s hard for the sportswriters to ignore 30 homers.
AL Manager of the Year
Jim Leyland? Mike Hargrove? I’m kind of out of options here. There was nobody who stood out at all. I guess Eric Wedge makes the most sense, or maybe Mike Sciosia.
NL Manager of the Year
Bob Melvin virtually willed the D-Backs into the playoffs, and though I thought that Ned Yost was the frontrunner, the Brewers missing of the playoffs means that Melvin will likely take the metal home.
TwentySeven here! I liked my post the other day about Phil Hughes, the format specifically. So, I’m proud to present you with:
The Top Ten Reasons why the Colorado Rockies Will Be Serious Contenders in ’08
10. The NL West is a mediocre division. Sure, it’s not NL Central territory, but there are no real powerhouses in the division and the only really bad team in there are the Giants.
Do the Yankee management not understand that Chris Britton (pictured at left – dig the sideburns) is major league material?! Bruney has 50 innings of work with majors and minors combined! If Villone is tired, I know, call up a guy who’s pitched every day in the majors and minors, his arm will suddenly be refreshed by the promotion! And they think he’ll be able to stand pitching another 15 innings the rest of the season, and possibly the playoffs. There’s a reason Bruney was sent down in the first place, his BB/K ratio is 30/32. Chris Britton pitched a full season in the majors last year with a 3.35 ERA! He’s not a prospect anymore, you don’t have to keep him locked up in AAA getting ready for the big leagues. Britton is… oh, wait. He’s already pitched 56 innings in the minors. Great. Nice work. Just perfect. Way to ruin an entire perfectly good year for a good reliever on a team that needs relievers of the good variety. Ugh, sometimes I don’t get the Yankee bullpen. Actually, with the exception of the 9th inning in a close game, I never get it. Even then, sometimes the decisions Torre makes puzzles me to no end. Well, Bruney did pitch a scoreless inning today, maybe… nah. He’ll blow it.
Ah, yes, I remember when optimism lasted more than ten seconds.
In other news: Wake up Chicago! Stop handing your games on a silver platter, and to the Red Sox at that. Everyone’s always “surging” like the Red Sox are “surging”, why can’t they just say winning a lot? And winning three games in a row is really surging. And why do I have the sneaking suspicion that that silver platter that is the white sox will suddenly become less silvery and less plattery when the Yankees come to town? Wait, the Yanks don’t play them for the remainder of the year. There goes my theory. Which is both good and bad, because I want the Yankees to win, but then I also want them to win… And why do I have the sneaking suspicion none of this made much sense?
By the way, I noticed Bruney was pitching out of the windup in the 9th inning of Saturday night’s Yanks-Tigers game, I don’t think I’ve ever seen him do that. Perhaps that was something they tweaked in the Scranton/W-B to improve his command. I’ll have to investigate. Also, by the way, the Tigers announcers showed Bruney warming up in the bullpen and labeled him “Joba Chamberlain.” I almost had a heart attack when I thought Joe was putting him in a five run game – then I noticed he didn’t quite look like Joba… then I realized it was Bruney. And they didn’t correct the mistake.
Johan Santana (Mr. Cy, right) is ridiculously good. This time of the year is his annual Cy Young push.
8.0 IP, 17 K’s, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB
Only 8.0 IP? Why not a complete game? The bum!
By the way, those 17 K’s make for a nice, sweet Twins record.
The guy has a ridiculous changeup, and if the Twins want to be good a few years from now, they are going to need to pony up the cash for this man. Francisco Liriano is good, but he’s a huge injury risk, and even if he can be as good as Johan, the team really needs the guy. They also need some offense.
The Twins, to me, are something of a joke compared to typical playoff teams. They have that dominant ace, the dominant bullpen arm, and there are a few good bats in their lineup (Cuddyer, Morneau, Mauer)… On the other hand, Torii Hunter is going to walk this season, and it’s a foregone conclusion that the Twins can’t afford him if they want to get some of their other guys. Not only that, but they can’t even surround their legit talent with any medium talent players at all. Sorry, but Nick Punto and the “piranhas” just aren’t going to cut it. They rare a small budget team without much in the way of a farm system, and that’s a formula that’s just set up for failure. They need to get a bigger budget or improve their farm sometime soon. People think of the Twins as legit contenders, but I only see a team with rotation holes once you get past the ace and a few strong players surrounded by a weak lineup. Sorry.
Sammy Sosa is a killjoy, by the way. In Mark Buerhle’s no-no, he got a walk to prevent a perfect game. In Johan’s game, he got the two hits and probably prevented Johan from getting a perfecto. Not only that…
Sammy Sosa v J. Santana this year: 3-4, 1 HR, 2 BB, 1 K
Other Rangers v J. Santana this year: 3-47, 0 HR, 0 BB, 29 K
I mean, wow. Jeez.
In other news, Ryan Braun hit another homer. The Hebrew Hammer strikes again.
Also, my parents threatened to disown me again (Okay, not really. Go figure).
I realized today that the pitching on my fantasy baseball team is ridiculously good: Roy Halladay, Erik Bedard, Chris Young, Phil Hughes, Noah Lowry (he’s actually really good), and Aaron Harang. I’ve discovered that I’m a really good judge of talent in baseball. Most people said Chris Young’s ’06 was a fluke, but I saw that he had Tall Pitcher Syndrome before ’06 (though Petco can’t hurt), and knew he was for realsies. Bedard? His changeup is almost Santana-esque from what I’ve heard. Phil Hughes? Hey, he’s a Yankee. Lowry? Pitched hurt most of last year. Harang? On any other team, he would be really really famous. He’s not even the most famous pitcher on his team, which is kind of ridiculous since he’s better than Bronson Arroyo. By quite a bit.
And, my relievers and hitters aren’t all that bad either. I guess I’m just good at this stuff.
Yeah, so good stuff.