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Thursday, November 15, 2018

Yelich, Betts Win MVPs

Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts was named the 2018 American League Most Valuable Player on Thursday, adding an appropriate finishing touch to a magical year for a team that won a franchise-record 108 regular-season games and its fourth World Series in 15 seasons, and Brewers outfielder Christian Yelich earned the NL MVP honors after leading Milwaukee to an NL-best 96 wins and a return to the playoffs for the first time in 2011.

Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: November 15, 2018 at 06:54 PM | 62 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: awards, brewers, red sox

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   1. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:11 PM (#5788161)
Congratulations to the winners. While you could make an argument for a few pitchers in the NL over Yelich, I don't think the selection of Yelich is at all surprising or that controversial.

I do find it pretty interesting that deGrom got more MVP support than Scherzer -- I sort of figured that he'd win the CYA but get less MVP support due to his low win total. (And given the strength of Scherzer's hitting it would actually be defensible to rank them differently in the two awards.) Seems like the writers are almost entirely looking past the win stat these days.
   2. Bote Man Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:31 PM (#5788168)
I am so glad for Christian Yelich winning the MVP. I know he couldn't buy a hit in the post-season, but this award is based on the championship season which is 162 games of constant drama; if you can make it through that grind with flying colors then you deserve accolades.

I've always had an eye for him and was so glad when he escaped the Marlins. More power to him (not that he needs it).
   3. Rally Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:32 PM (#5788169)
Trout’s 4th second place finish. I wonder how many players have more.

Not complainin, just sayin. Despite my biased viewpoint I would have voted for Betts too.
   4. Rally Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:35 PM (#5788173)
Don’t have to look too far from last year’s Angel roster to find another player with 4 2nd place finishes. Bonds only had 2, with 7 firsts.
   5. JAHV Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:36 PM (#5788174)
Trout’s 4th second place finish. I wonder how many players have more.

Not complainin, just sayin. Despite my biased viewpoint I would have voted for Betts too.


Yeah, this is one of the two second place years that there's a reasonable argument for the guy who won it (the other being Donaldson's win). Betts is a deserving winner. The two Cabrera MVPs were bad.

   6. Rally Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:37 PM (#5788175)
Ted also had 4. Mays surprisingly only had 2, plus 2 wins. Seems strange for a guy who had 13 seasons as good or better than what Yelich did this season.
   7. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:38 PM (#5788177)
According to MLBN Trout is tied with Pujols and Musial for most second place finishes.

Hard to argue these selections. Obviously as a red soxmfan im delighted for Mookie who is an incredibly likable superstar. He’s also taking over for Greg Maddux in the “mild mannered reporter look” off the field with his glasses.
   8. Zonk Can't Hide his Disdain or Disgust Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:39 PM (#5788178)
The homer in me wanted Baez, but that was pure homerism.

The Brewers just blasted through September and seized the division - and Yelich led them to it. Even if Yelich hadn't eclipsed Baez by about 1.5 WAR, he would have still probably deserved it.

I have to admit - I was a little bit cheering for Cain and Yelich to cause a problem for each other and Baez to sneak through, but I see he got 29 1st place votes and probably deserved 30.

Not that place-show-etc matters, but the guy who got screwed in NL voting is probably Lorenzo Cain.
   9. The Duke Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:45 PM (#5788182)
Albert Pujols has won the MVP Award three times. He should have won it three other times, but in each of those three seasons, he finished behind players who either benefited from using performance enhancing substances or were suspected of using such substances

In his rookie year of 2001, Pujols finished fourth in the MVP voting, behind winner Barry Bonds, runner-up Sammy Sosa and third-place finisher Luis Gonzalez.

The next season, Bonds repeated as the MVP winner. It was the fifth time in his career that he won the award. Pujols finished a distant second

Bonds wasn't finished winning the award. He was voted the MVP in both 2003 and 2004.

In 2003, Pujols finished right behind the convicted perjurer and in 2004, he finished third, behind Bonds and Adrian Beltre.

Bonds was unable to play much in 2005. Pujols won his first MVP award. He won it again in 2008 and 2009.



The above was from an article on pujols being robbed of several mvps. Probably fair to argue he lost three MVPs to PEDs. At least Trout has a teammate who’s been through this. Amazing really how these two guys are on the same team. Imagine if they had played in their prime together.
   10. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:49 PM (#5788183)
I'm pretty hyped about Mookie winning. He's off to an incredible start to his career, he's 19th in WAR before age 25, and only he and Pujols didn't reach the majors until their age 21 season. Also, while Trout should have more MVP awards, this isn't one of them.

Also, the Marlins had both the 2017 and 2018 NL MVPs on their roster in 2017. What a tire fire of an organization.
   11. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:53 PM (#5788185)
Who gave JD Martinez a first place vote? Yeesh.
   12. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: November 15, 2018 at 07:54 PM (#5788186)
Both winners are deserving, and a lot of fun to watch.
   13. The Run Fairy Posted: November 15, 2018 at 08:04 PM (#5788191)
Who gave JD Martinez a first place vote? Yeesh.


Dave Campbell of the Associated Press.
   14. Zonk Can't Hide his Disdain or Disgust Posted: November 15, 2018 at 08:07 PM (#5788192)
I'm trying to remember...

When was the last time someone basically went from "in the mix" to "clear choice" with a September that also led his team to a title?

In ~late August, the NL MVP still seemed to be pretty wide open. Yelich was definitely in the mix, but without checking I really do think it was a jump ball as late as Sept 1.

Then - he hits 370/508/804... and that's on top of an August that was 307/363/667 (and much of that damage coming in the last week or so)... while he also basically leads his team to seizing the division from a rival that really didn't play THAT badly in September either (i.e., said it two months ago - the Cubs didn't collapse. The Brewers just beat them and seized the NLC).

The moldy hops and bong resin probably obscure my memory, but it's just the first time in a while I can remember that a player just really took the final month and basically said "Enough of this. I'M the MVP."
   15. AndrewJ Posted: November 15, 2018 at 08:08 PM (#5788193)
Trout’s 4th second place finish.

He's at 5.06 career MVP Shares, 11th all-time. He's 27. Probably still gets carded at most bars.

Hank Aaron received MVP votes in 19 consecutive seasons. Career MVP Shares: 5.45.
   16. BrianBrianson Posted: November 15, 2018 at 08:44 PM (#5788200)
The above was from an article on pujols being robbed of several mvps. Probably fair to argue he lost three MVPs to PEDs.


But Pujols was also suspected of using PEDs, so it's only fair.
   17. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:09 PM (#5788214)
Zonk, the last guy I remember, in the NL at least, was Chipper Jones in 1999, who completely owned the Mets towards the end of the season and won an award that was Jeff Bagwell’s to lose up until that point.
   18. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:20 PM (#5788221)
Zonk, the last guy I remember, in the NL at least, was Chipper Jones in 1999, who completely owned the Mets towards the end of the season and won an award that I think was Jeff Bagwell’s to lose up until that point.


Chipper Jones was the first one to come to mind for me too. More recently, possibly Jimmy Rollins in 2007? If I remember correctly, that was the year that the Mets collapsed in the last couple of weeks to give the division to the Phillies. The Phillies winning the division surely helped Rollins with the voters although I don't know who he might have passed to win it. Matt Holliday finished second that year and his team also made the playoffs on the strength of a miracle push (the Rockies won 14 of their last 15 regular-season games including a Game 163 in which Holliday scored the winning run in extra innings).

But again, if the Mets win the NL East and the Padres win the NL Wild Card, I don't know who might have won that MVP instead (Prince Fielder and David Wright were 3-4 in the voting).
   19. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:21 PM (#5788224)
The moldy hops and bong resin probably obscure my memory, but it's just the first time in a while I can remember that a player just really took the final month and basically said "Enough of this. I'M the MVP."


Yaz had a monster Sep 1967, .417/.504/.760 9 HR 26 RBI, but he was probably the favorite before that.
   20. Zonk Can't Hide his Disdain or Disgust Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:28 PM (#5788226)
Zonk, the last guy I remember, in the NL at least, was Chipper Jones in 1999, who completely owned the Mets towards the end of the season and won an award that was Jeff Bagwell’s to lose up until that point.


Yup -

Looking back a bit further, I agree with Inge and Kiko... that's the last time I remember such a September.

Man... count that as another getting old benchmark: Clicking on a bb-ref list and realizing you need to scroll a page to quickly refresh your baseball adulthood memories. I'd just change the browser text size but you know, the eyes...

EDIT: More... my recollection of Rollins in 2007 is that we were mostly complaining by mid/late-summer that he was probably going to win it but didn't deserve it. As alluded above, re: Pujols, I think that was one of the he waz robbed... and it's also one of those back-to-back years where a lot of people seemed to have the opinion "FFS, if you're going insist on team performance - at least least pick the right guy on the team! (Chase Utley)".
   21. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:29 PM (#5788228)
Also, since what started this was a Brewers MVP, Robin Yount's 1982 season occurred to me. He batted .341/.410/.563 in September and the Brewers won the AL East on the final day of the season. But that race was close because the Orioles got red hot and caught the Brewers, not the reverse. The Brewers had a 4.5-game lead going into September. So I'm pretty sure Yount was already the presumptive MVP by then.
   22. BillWallace Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:34 PM (#5788231)
A good time to take stock of how far we've come. 20 years ago I believe JD would have been the run away winner.

I'm in the camp that prefers to separate pitchers and hitters for these awards, so I see these as two perfect choices.
   23. Zonk Can't Hide his Disdain or Disgust Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:43 PM (#5788236)
Also, since what started this was a Brewers MVP, Robin Yount's 1982 season occurred to me. He batted .341/.410/.563 in September and the Brewers won the AL East on the final day of the season. But that race was close because the Orioles got red hot and caught the Brewers, not the reverse. The Brewers had a 4.5-game lead going into September. So I'm pretty sure Yount was already the presumptive MVP by then.


:-)

I was 9 - I get a pass for not scrolling TWO pages....

Though, it's somewhat surprising I never became a Brewers fan because that was the first baseball season I sorta kinda remember among baseball seasons. My dad is a Yankees fan, but he liked the '82 Brewers - and made sure I understood why Gorman Thomas, Rollie Fingers, Pete Vukovich, and Cecil Cooper were cool, to say nothing of Robin Yount. First year of little league. Grew up in the midwest - closer to the Cubs/Sox, but just another hour or so from Milwaukee. Just didn't take. Wandered another year until Ryno's MVP season.
   24. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:49 PM (#5788241)
Also, since what started this was a Brewers MVP, Robin Yount's 1982 season occurred to me. He batted .341/.410/.563 in September and the Brewers won the AL East on the final day of the season. But that race was close because the Orioles got red hot and caught the Brewers, not the reverse. The Brewers had a 4.5-game lead going into September. So I'm pretty sure Yount was already the presumptive MVP by then.


In game 163, Yount went 3-4 with a triple, 2 HR, HBP, and 4 runs scored.
   25. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: November 15, 2018 at 09:56 PM (#5788245)
The best comment I saw noted that Betts was every bit as good as Mike Trout was THIS year -- which is true -- but only Mike Trout was as good as Mike Trout EVERY year.

If they were voting for the AL MVP for 2012 and 2013 in 2018, Trout would win at least one of them. The voters have come a long ways. (Either that, or just enough of them have been replaced or outnumbered.)
   26. The Duke Posted: November 15, 2018 at 10:07 PM (#5788249)
Brewers pick up of Yelich could turn into one of the great trades ever. Never really understood why the Marlins dealt him. Locked up for several years on a great deal. Like Freddie freeman, he could have been there when the marlins got good again.
   27. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: November 15, 2018 at 10:09 PM (#5788250)
Never really understood why the Marlins dealt him.


Because the Marlins aren't a baseball organization. They are a money laundering organization.
   28. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: November 15, 2018 at 10:31 PM (#5788264)
Ted also had 4. Mays surprisingly only had 2, plus 2 wins. Seems strange for a guy who had 13 seasons as good or better than what Yelich did this season.

Not that strange when you consider the competition he faced: Campanella, Aaron, Banks, Frank Robinson, Musial, Clemente, Koufax, Gibson, Cepeda, McCovey, Bench, etc. Williams had it much easier in that respect, since the talent depth in the AL during his career wasn't nearly as deep as the NL's when Mays was active.
   29. Ziggy's screen name Posted: November 15, 2018 at 10:34 PM (#5788267)
So all the awards went to the expected people? Boring. It was fun when the NL MVP looked like it was going to be wide open. A six way split in which the MVP wind it with 24% of the vote would have been sweet.
   30. Ray (CTL) Posted: November 15, 2018 at 11:41 PM (#5788295)
Yelich had flown a bit under the radar before this season as a good solid under-26 player with broad-based skills. He could have been expected to add power but is this much of a home run power increase for real?

   31. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: November 15, 2018 at 11:49 PM (#5788298)
Yelich had flown a bit under the radar before this season as a good solid under-26 player with broad-based skills. He could have been expected to add power but is this much of a home run power increase for real?


Most (well, I won't cop to most without doing research. So many) MVP seasons are flukes.
   32. Master of the Horse Posted: November 15, 2018 at 11:50 PM (#5788300)
Approximately half of Yelich’s fly balls in second half resulted in homers. So that suggests fluke as not sustainable. But in several interviews Yelich altered swing during first half to get more lift with focus on driving first pitches and said things clicked in second half. His first pitch batting splits are insane

Also hit a lot of homers to center and left center so not just pull heavy

Long way of saying think change is legit but won’t generate same type of results next season because who besides Trout could? But 25-35 homers seem reasonable given health

Edit: Also walked more and not just IBB stuff Second edit: Had the walk stuff wrong.
   33. Master of the Horse Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:01 AM (#5788305)
1.711 OPS on first pitches. 12 homers. Crazy
   34. Sweatpants Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:02 AM (#5788306)
More recently, possibly Jimmy Rollins in 2007? If I remember correctly, that was the year that the Mets collapsed in the last couple of weeks to give the division to the Phillies. The Phillies winning the division surely helped Rollins with the voters although I don't know who he might have passed to win it. Matt Holliday finished second that year and his team also made the playoffs on the strength of a miracle push (the Rockies won 14 of their last 15 regular-season games including a Game 163 in which Holliday scored the winning run in extra innings).

But again, if the Mets win the NL East and the Padres win the NL Wild Card, I don't know who might have won that MVP instead (Prince Fielder and David Wright were 3-4 in the voting).
I recall expecting Holliday to win. Wright was the NL's best player that year, in my opinion, but the Mets were supposed to be the league's best team, which might have worked against him even had they made the playoffs. The Brewers, if I remember correctly, started the season hot but had serious problems in the second half (which happened again the season after that and got Ned Yost fired), so the voters might have bypassed Fielder, too.

Rollins winning annoyed me because I thought he won it with his mouth, by predicting in the preseason that the Phillies would beat the Mets that year. To his credit, that was a long shot that they pulled off, and Rollins played a big part in that by having pretty much the best season that a player of his talents was capable of having.
   35. Ray (CTL) Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:03 AM (#5788308)
Most similar batter to Betts according to b-r?

Yelich.
   36. Ray (CTL) Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:09 AM (#5788311)
Is 10.9 WAR for Betts in only 612 PA / 136 G close to a modern record for WAR/G in a season?
   37. Sweatpants Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:14 AM (#5788313)
Bonds had 11.8 WAR in 612/143 in 2002.
   38. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:30 AM (#5788318)
Isn’t Miller Park good for homers? That might be part of it.
   39. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:30 AM (#5788319)
I think there are quite a lot of pitchers who have a better WAR/G than that.
   40. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 16, 2018 at 06:30 AM (#5788329)
#36 my first thought was Trout’s rookie year, but he “only” had 10.5 WAR in 139 games / 639 PA.
   41. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 16, 2018 at 06:34 AM (#5788330)
The thing about Yelich is his peripherals this year we’re almost completely in line with his recent history, with the exception being a slightly higher FB rate and a much higher HR/FB rate. Any apparent change in things like his BABip can be ascribed to hitting more HR, and hence fewer balls in play.

So basically whether he can keep this up (the full year performance, not the 2H) is all about whether he can keep hitting home runs at this rate.
   42. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 16, 2018 at 08:51 AM (#5788337)
In 2003, Pujols finished right behind the convicted perjurer


1. It was obstruction of justice, not perjury, for "giving an evasive answer", which he then clarified later in the testimony.
2. The conviction was later overturned by an appeals court with a 10-1 vote.
   43. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 16, 2018 at 09:01 AM (#5788339)
Most (well, I won't cop to most without doing research. So many) MVP seasons are flukes.


On that note, Nolan Arenado just had his third straight Top Five finish, in which he's hit .294/.362/.570, .309/.373/.586, and .297/.374/.561. His homers have ranged from 37 to 41. The season prior to those three was exactly the same but with half as many walks.

It would probably take a fluky 50-homer season to win him an MVP, but I'm satisfied with what he's done.
   44. Mefisto Posted: November 16, 2018 at 09:07 AM (#5788340)
Not that strange when you consider the competition he faced: Campanella, Aaron, Banks, Frank Robinson, Musial, Clemente, Koufax, Gibson, Cepeda, McCovey, Bench, etc. Williams had it much easier in that respect, since the talent depth in the AL during his career wasn't nearly as deep as the NL's when Mays was active.


And yet Mays still led the NL position players in WAR 10 times from 1954-66.
   45. Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens Posted: November 16, 2018 at 09:18 AM (#5788343)
The best comment I saw noted that Betts was every bit as good as Mike Trout was THIS year -- which is true -- but only Mike Trout was as good as Mike Trout EVERY year.
Trout is just ridiculous--it's telling that Betts and Betts alone (among active hitters) now has two seasons that fit comfortably among Trout's top 4 or 5.

That said, it's Mookie, not Trout, who now appears here.

   46. Spahn Insane Posted: November 16, 2018 at 09:19 AM (#5788344)
Approximately half of Yelich’s fly balls in second half resulted in homers. So that suggests fluke as not sustainable. But in several interviews Yelich altered swing during first half to get more lift with focus on driving first pitches and said things clicked in second half. His first pitch batting splits are insane.

The Athletic has a good article about Yelich's power development, noting that it's the best season in terms of wRC+ (166) for a player who hits over half his batted balls on the ground since they started tracking GB rate in 2002. And other than Shawn Green's 42 in 2002, Yelich's 36 is easily the highest home run total among the top 10 such seasons (next highest is Tommy Pham in 2017 with 23).

I wouldn't expect him to sustain his power at quite this level, but certainly Miller is a better place for him to try than Marlins Park would've been, especially if he can regularly generate the kind of lift he displayed this year (and as noted he still hit most of his balls on the ground even with that). I don't expect 36 homers a year going forward, and I agree that HR/FB rate isn't likely sustainable, but a good hitters park combined with a high hard contact rate will work in his favor, and he just seems like a broad based talent with a high aptitude for improving on what he's already got. Consistent 30-homer seasons from Yelich for the next few years wouldn't surprise me at all.

My god, David Stearns absolutely ate Theo & Co's. lunch last offseason. They acquired the guys who finished first and seventh in the MVP voting (with 14.5 WAR) within a day of each other without giving up much (I don't think Lewis Brinson's ever going to be anything exciting), and their best starting pitcher was signed on a very modest deal.
   47. Benji Gil Gamesh VII - The Opt-Out Awakens Posted: November 16, 2018 at 09:19 AM (#5788345)
.
   48. Spahn Insane Posted: November 16, 2018 at 09:38 AM (#5788349)
Brewers pick up of Yelich could turn into one of the great trades ever.

When I made my comment about Brinson in 46, I hadn't even looked to see how his season ended up; I mostly saw him early in the season when the Cubs played the Marlins (surprisingly enough, I didn't follow Jeter's Jesters so closely after that). My god. 62 OPS+ in over 400 PAs (and he's a whopping 2.5 years younger than Yelich himself; when Yelich was Brinson's age he'd already put up ~4 seasons of a combined OPS+ over 120. In the major leagues.).
   49. Darren Posted: November 16, 2018 at 12:10 PM (#5788435)
Mookie is the most fun Red Sox player to watch since Nomar's 1999/2000 seasons. Hopefully his 30s go better than Nomar's.

   50. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: November 16, 2018 at 01:23 PM (#5788478)
Mookie is the most fun Red Sox player to watch since Nomar's 1999/2000 seasons. Hopefully his 30s go better than Nomar's.


Now that would be an interesting HoF call. Assuming Mookie really followed in Nomar's steps let's say he goes 8.2, 0, 8.2, 8.2 (just taking an average over his last 4 years, Nomaar was pretty consistent), including the missed age 27 season. Add in the last 3 WAR that Nomar accumulated and that leaves Betts around 63 WAR for his career, but with a very impressive 41.1 WAR peak over 5 consecutive seasons. More WAR than a few other HOF outfielders, he certainly wouldn't be setting a new floor. Or would he get Larry Walker'd and end up with a rep of being too injured and relying too much on defense for his case?

   51. John DiFool2 Posted: November 16, 2018 at 01:41 PM (#5788489)

Is 10.9 WAR for Betts in only 612 PA / 136 G close to a modern record for WAR/G in a season?


Bonds had 11.8 WAR in 612/143 in 2002.


George Brett, 9.7 in 515/117 in 1980.

Barry: .083 WAR/game
Mookie: .080
George: .083
   52. Lyford Posted: November 16, 2018 at 02:58 PM (#5788542)
Barry: .083 WAR/game
Mookie: .080
George: .083


Slacker. Hopefully he'll pick it up a bit next year...
   53. Walt Davis Posted: November 16, 2018 at 03:59 PM (#5788579)
The Brewers also gave up top-100 prospect Monte Harrison in that deal. Now why Harrison was a top-100 after 3 years in A ball topping out at 272/350/481 is a question you'll have to ask the prospect mavens ... and he did not have a good year at AA hitting 240/316/399. He's turning 23 so he needs to step i up quick.

Jordan Yamamoto is looking like the prize of that trade for the Marlins. At 22, only 69 innings this year but a 1.83 ERA and 11.1/1.8 K/BB. I assume he was hurt but he just pitched in the AFL -- control issues but 2.08 ERA, 9.5 K/9, 5.2 H/9 in 26 innings (I assume a pretty heavy load for the AFL). The Marlins also got Isan Diaz who had been top 100 before 2017 but is another fading rising 23-year-old after two unimpressive years with the bat.

I tend towards believing it's close to impossible to get "fair" value for a guy like Yelich (even pre-2018 Yelich), even when that's future value. But a top-20 prospect (Brinson), a second top 100 (Harrison), a guy who was top 100 last year (Diaz) and a young pitcher putting up excellent K/9, K/BB, H/9 is a pretty good haul by the standards of these trades. If it ends up as a total flop for the Marlins, put that on the vagaries of prospects or possibly the superiority of the Brewers' development people if they recognized these prospects wouldn't make it.

But it certainly so far peles in comparison to what the Cubs gave up for Jose Quintana.
   54. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: November 16, 2018 at 05:28 PM (#5788617)
I'd just like to point out that Trout and Betts have each produced 27 bWAR over the last three seasons, though Betts has 300 fewer PAs.

For anyone to match Trout over a three year span is pretty amazing.
   55. Walt Davis Posted: November 17, 2018 at 03:45 PM (#5788843)
Mookie is awesome but those of you comping him to Trout based on bWAR are not allowed to question any other player's DRS numbers for at least the rest of his career. :-)
   56. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: November 17, 2018 at 04:06 PM (#5788856)
Trout’s 4th second place finish. I wonder how many players have more.

Checking the top 20 in MVP shares, Williams, Musial, Pujols all had 4 as well. Mantle had 3.

Aaron had only one win and never finished second - but finished third SIX times, which has to be the most times any player has had a specific finish in the MVP voting outside of "Bonds, 1st."
   57. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: November 17, 2018 at 04:25 PM (#5788868)
Checking a little further, Musial is the only player to have finished second behind four different players; Pujols lost to Bonds twice, Williams to Dimaggio, and of course Trout to Cabrera.
   58. eric Posted: November 17, 2018 at 05:05 PM (#5788873)
Musial also had three seconds in a row. Also, maybe only interesting to me and Jayson Stark, but all his four seconds were after his last first.
   59. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: November 17, 2018 at 05:47 PM (#5788877)
Mookie is awesome but those of you comping him to Trout based on bWAR are not allowed to question any other player's DRS numbers for at least the rest of his career. :-)

Nah, because Mookie checks all of the boxes.

He passes the eye test with flying colors. He looks ridiculous out there, and routinely makes plays where you think he should have no shot at them.

Other defensive metrics (UZR, TZ, basic RF) love him about as much as DRS does.

Here are his inside edge fielding numbers for his career from FG:

Remote -- (1-10%): 8.6%
Unlikely (10-40%): 48.6%
Even --- (40-60%): 61.3%
Likely - (60-90%): 89.6%
Routine (90-100%): 99.8%

Those numbers are all at the complete upper bound of what should be possible, and in some cases are literally off the charts good.
   60. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: November 17, 2018 at 07:23 PM (#5788887)
I'd just like to point out that Trout and Betts have each produced 27 bWAR over the last three seasons, though Betts has 300 fewer PAs.

Trout has 300 fewer PA, not Betts. (For what little it matters; they're both amazing either way.)
   61. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 18, 2018 at 12:23 AM (#5788946)
he could have been there when the marlins got good again.
Ah, see, here’s the problem: What you got here is a faulty premise. I’ll change it out for you, but we might have to order a new part. Could take a few days.
   62. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: November 18, 2018 at 07:26 AM (#5788951)
Ted also had 4. Mays surprisingly only had 2, plus 2 wins. Seems strange for a guy who had 13 seasons as good or better than what Yelich did this season.

Not that strange when you consider the competition he faced: Campanella, Aaron, Banks, Frank Robinson, Musial, Clemente, Koufax, Gibson, Cepeda, McCovey, Bench, etc. Williams had it much easier in that respect, since the talent depth in the AL during his career wasn't nearly as deep as the NL's when Mays was active.

And yet Mays still led the NL position players in WAR 10 times from 1954-66.


All of which goes to show how writers can just take certain players for granted, particularly their defensive contributions. But the point does remain that Mays had far more future Inner Circle HoFers to beat out for MVPs than Williams, as you can see by looking at the list of MVP winners during their respective careers.

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