As we approach the end of the Major League Baseball regular season, many people are discussing who will win each of the major awards. My predictions are as follows:
AL MVP – Mike Trout – Mike Trout has been phenomenal in his first season. Trout has played around 100 games and already has made an impression. Projecting that Mike Trout will win the AL MVP Award was very difficult because Miguel Cabrera has also played very well. But my vote is for Mike Trout. Mike Trout is leading the AL in batting average of around .340 average, along with 6 triples, 24 homers, 72 RBIs, and an AL best 41 stolen bases. Cabrera has more homeruns and RBIs, but Trout distinguishes himself with his spend and amazing defense as he is a lock for the golden glove as well.
NL MVP – Andrew McCutchen – Andrew McCutchen has been astonishing this season. From my perspective, McCutchen is a front-runner to win the NL MVP Award. The reason McCutchen has surpassed all the other candidates are because of all his skills. McCutchen is batting above .340 with 5 triples, 24 homers, 78 RBIs, and 15 stolen bases. Many players such as Ryan Braun, Giancarlo Stanton, and Carlos Beltran have had fine seasons, but for now I project McCutchen to win the award.
AL CY Young - David Price – David Price has been the most dominant pitcher in the MLB this year. Price is tied with the most wins in the MLB (16) and has the best ERA for starters (2.28). He will have to go up against many talented pitchers like Chris Sale, Felix Hernandez, Jered Weaver, and Justin Verlander, but I think Price will emerge as the AL Cy Young Award winner.
NL CY Young – Johnny Cueto – Johnny Cueto has just been amazing this year. Having 16 wins and an ERA of just 2.47, Cueto looks like the leader for the CY Young Award. But there are other candidates that could steal Cueto’s spot, such as R.A. Dickey, Stephen Strasburg, and yes starting pitcher Kyle Lohse. But I project Cueto to keep up his work and finish the season above 20 wins and an ERA under 2.60. Another contender is Cueto’s teammate Aroldis Chapman. While Chapman may be the most dominant pitcher in baseball, I feel Cueto is most deserving of the CY Young Award.
AL Rookie of the Year – Mike Trout – This is an easy decision. There is nobody even close to stealing this award from Trout. His numbers have been amazing and with all his skills, he is a lock for the AL Rookie of the Year. There is no other answer than Trout.
NL Rookie of the Year - Todd Frazier – The NL Rookie of the Year seems like an easy decision, but it was a very hard one for me. Todd Frazier is the best rookie in the National League as of right now. His stats prove he is worthy of taking home the trophy. But fan-favorite Bryce Harper could steal the NL Rookie of the Year Award right out of Frazier’s hands. Todd Frazier has done well filling in for Joey Votto, hitting in the .290s with18 homers. Comparing him to Bryce Harper shows that not only is Frazier better than him, but that Harper isn’t playing all that well at the Major League level. Harper is only batting .248 with 12 homers, despite 70 more at bats. Yet but to fans, having a 19 year old win the Rookie of the Year, will attract them to vote for Harper. If the award is based on performance, Todd Frazier will win the NL Rookie of the Year Award.
NL Comeback Player of the Year – Buster Posey - Buster Posey has recovered from a gruesome broken leg from May 2011 to put together an All-Star campaign in 2012. Posey has been the best catcher in the MLB as of right now, posting around a .330 average with 19 homers and 8o RBIs. Posey has been the symbol of what a comeback player is.
AL Comeback Player of the Year – Adam Dunn – After a disastrous 2011 season that saw him hit .159 with 11 home runs and 42 RBI in 122 games, Adam Dunn has turned it around for the Chicago White Sox, posting a low .200 average with 38 homers and 87 RBI this season. Although his average is still pretty low and his strikeout numbers are still soaring, his 38 homers easily make him a leading candidate for the award. Many other players that had a shot at this have either slowed down or have been out-shined by Dunn’s performance. Dunn’s teammate Jake Peavy could also be considered in the AL Comeback Player of the Year race, but Dunn looks to be the most deserving.
AL Manager of the Year – Bob Melvin – Bob Melvin has done a good job in turning around the 2012 Oakland Athletics. The Athletics have not been very good in the past few years, but one thing is for sure: the Athletics are ready to make a postseason run. Bob Melvin will have to go up against Robin Ventura for the AL Manager of the Year, but I do not expect the White Sox to stay as hot as they are. If Melvin is making all the right moves to the end of the season, expect this award to be his.
NL Manager of the Year – Clint Hurdle - Clint Hurdle has done an excellent job of managing the Pittsburgh Pirates to an over-.500 record. He should win the NL Manager of the Year Award as long as the Buccos remain above .500 at season’s end. A winning record would end a 19-year streak of losing seasons. If a winning record does occur, then my vote goes straight out to Clint Hurdle. Hurdle has effectively managed his team, making the right decisions for the lineups as well as finding injury-replacements, so expect Hurdle to walk away with the NL Manager of the Year Award under his belt.
By: Charlie DiSturco