On The Rookies of the Year, Managers of the Year, and Cy Young Awards

Either I’m getting old, the baseball season was really long,  it’s Monday, or all three. Usually, I get quite excited to rage about silly awards voting, the hall of fame, hitting ones head against the wall, and other futile exploits. And yet, in thinking about this years end of season awards, and the injustice that is no doubt pending, I just can’t get all that pumped up. There’s still time, and if I’m being honest with myself, it’s only going to take one outrageous result before I snap right back into action—but at least for our initial foray into this nonsense, my anger and enthusiasm is going to be minimal.

Craig Kimbrel won NL Rookie of the Year today and I have no problem with that at all. Jeremy Hellickson took the AL version, and while I could probably have a problem with that and spend some sentences on the merits of Michael Pineda, Dustin Ackley (Mariners homer!), Eric Hosmer, Desmond Jennings, or Brett Lawrie (Ivan Nova very purposefully excluded), I just don’t think I’m up to the task. Hellickson won some games, his ERA was low, and he pitched in a tough division. These things happen. And while I think other candidates have more compelling cases, I don’t think there was really one stand-out no-brainer the way Kimbrel was in the NL. If I cared, I might be interested in making cases for Ackley and Lawrie above the rest of them. I might even be nuts enough to think that Lawrie deserved the award. But let’s not worry about what’s said and done. Let’s worry about this other meaningless stuff!

AL Cy Young – Justin Verlander: I completely see the case for CC Sabathia, and you’ll be hard pressed to find someone more annoyed with the Verlander narrative than myself,  but I mean, come on, it’s still Justin Verlander. I’m just not ready to start quibbling over a .1 WAR difference and regressing BABIP all over the place.

NL Cy Young – Roy Halladay: Ok, so maybe I am, sort of.

AL Manager of the Year – Joe Maddon: He’s just a real smart guy. It could be the glasses, but I think there’s more to it. At any rate, when you’re up against two wealthy monoliths of evil, armed with nothing but 30 thousand dollars, some minor league players and your wits, winning the division is worthy of some serious praise.

NL Manager of the Year – Oh I Don’t Fucking Know, Kirk Gibson: The Snakes lost a lot of games last season, and they won a lot this season. Good for them. If you’re noticing a certain conspicuous lack of analysis at this point, it’s because I’ve already bored myself out of caring. Let’s try this again in a few days when the MVP Awards roll around.

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