Entries Tagged as 'Awards'

Votto best up North, eh?

Today, Joey Votto received the 2010 Lou Marsh Award which honors Canada’s top athlete. 

Others in the running for the award were:  Sidney Crosby, Jonathan Toews, Scott Virtue and Tesse Moir, Georges St-Pierre, Alexandre Bilodeau, Christine Nesbitt and Joannie Rochette.

Just to provide some perspective, some of Votto’s countrymen in the MLB include Jason Bay, Jason Morneau, Ryan Dempster and Jesse Crain. 

For those interested (I was so I looked him up), Lou Marsh was an Ontario-born athlete of a renaissance nature.  In the early 20th century, he was a sprinter, played rugby, sailed, among other sports.  He followed up his athletic career by becoming one of Canada’s premiere boxing and hockey referees. 

Felix Hernadez’ wins not a determinant factor in Cy Young: is this a trend?

King Felix didn’t run away with the AL Cy Young balloting.  David Price came close with 111 points to Hernandez’ 167.  Even CC Sabathia managed 102.  But the important stat:  Hernandez received 21 first place votes… much more than Price (4) and Sabathia (3).  In political terms, that’s a mandate.

Hernandez 13-12 record is certainly up for discussion as a Cy Young award winner.  His win total was 18th in the league.  EIGHTEENTH!  Can we safely say that win totals are becoming less important as a evaluator of a pitcher’s talent.  More precisely, is this mode of thought becoming more mainstream?  There’s no doubt that stat-heads and sabermetricians have been degrading wins as a statistic to quantify a pitcher’s ability.  So much so that one year ago, pitchers in both leagues won the Cy Young award over pitchers with better win totals (the AL’s Greinke with 16 wins and the NL’s Lincecum with 15).

If the writers are so willing to forgive Hernandez for his 13-12 record (granted, he was pitching for the last place Mariners), are they becoming more stat-savvy?  Or are we reading too much into this?  If we give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they’re putting some thought into this, why are we still using the save statistic to evaluate relievers?  The save, in my opinion, is a much more antiquated, misused, and manipulated stat that is very situation-based.  If there’s a grand movement among the baseball pundits to see the true value in baseball players, let’s re-evaluate the save statistic, overhaul it, or scrap it altogether.  But I digress.

I don’t dismiss wins as a stat.  It has a valued tradition in baseball and yes, it does have some value in telling baseball’s story.  I’m interested in seeing what will happen one year from now.  Will wins have a major factor in determining the 2011 Cy Young award winners?

Saturday night tidbits

Award named for Olerud; 2010 College HOF inductees chosen

John Olerud got an award named after him yesterday.

The College Baseball Foundation announced today the creation of the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award to be presented annually as part of the College Baseball Awards Show.

john-olerud Olerud (right) who is now a member of the College Baseball Hall of Fame, was a pitcher and first baseman, and a pretty good one at that, with Washington State University in the years 1987-1989.

Speaking of the College Baseball HOF, the 2010 inductees have been chosen.  Leading the way was former Met Dave Magadan who hit .525 as a senior for the Crimson Tide.  That was 1983, the year he was Baseball America’s Player of the Year.  

Also on the list:

Alan Bannister from Arizona State.  He was a .355 career hitter.

George Sisler (you might have heard of him):  He hit .445 his sophomore year and .451 his senior year for Michigan. 

B.J. Surhoff who played for North Carolina from 1983-1985.  Career BA of .392.

Others include:  Bob Bennett (Fresno State, coach 1977-2002), Eddy Furniss (LSU, 1995-1998), Don Heinkel (Wichita State, 1979-1982), Charles Teague (Wake Forest, 1947-1950) and Richard Wortham (Texas, 1973-1976).

The induction ceremony will take place on July 1.

2009 MiLBY awards announced

Roll out the red carpet.  It’s time for the 2009 MiLBY Awards which awarded to the best performances in the minor leagues this year. 

You can find the complete coverage of the MiLBYs on mlb.com

A couple awards of note:

Dan Hudson who pitched for the White Sox organization (and actually made it to the bigs for a quick cup of coffee late in the year) won the award for best overall pitcher.  He did so thanks to a 2.32 ERA and a 14-5.  Want a more impressive stat?  He struck out 166 and walked only 34 for a 4.88 K/BB ratio. 

David Cales is someone who I’m looking forward to seeing in a Cub uniform.  For Single-A Daytona, he had a 0.78 ERA in 37 games which got him the Best Reliever in Class A Advanced.  It may not be too long before we see him… he’s already made it to AA Tennessee. 

Speaking of Daytona, Catcher Robinson Chirinos who also plays for them, won the MiLBY award for Best Single Game Performance at the Class A Advanced level.  On May 31, the Venezuelan native hit two grand slams to help the Daytona Cubs to a 11-3 victory over Sarasota.  That’s the second time that’s happened in the Florida State League history.

The Best Team award went to Padre Class A affiliate Fort Wayne Tin Caps.  They won over 100 games (a 101-48 record to be precise) which in the minors, is pretty dang rare.  By the way, their manager?  Former Cubs speedster Doug Dascenzo.

The Best Hitter award will be announced sometime today.

Albert Pujols: Give him the ‘00s NL Triple Crown

Not only did Albert Pujols win three MVP awards this decade, he also can lay claim to the ‘00s Triple Crown according to ESPN’s Jayson Stark.  He lead all National Leaguers in batting average, homeruns and rbis for the decade. 

The last person to do that was Ted Williams in the 40s.

1961- Jim Gentile’s career year


A few posts I posted a trivia question of sorts.  Who came in third in the 1961 MVP voting after Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle.  My only hint was that this player had superior BA/OBP/SLG than Maris, the winner of the award. 

The answer, easily looked up of course, is Jim Gentile. 

Kudos to DonS who texted me the answer the next morning.  It took him two tries (his first was Norm Cash, a good guess).

In some ways, Gentile was a one-year wonder.  His 1961 season was phenomenal.  He had more runs, doubles, homers, rbis, walks than any other season in his career.  The same goes for his batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage.

Jim Gentile’s career stats

1957 BRO 4 6 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 1 1 .167 .286 .667
1958 LAD 12 30 0 4 1 0 0 4 0 4 6 .133 .235 .167
1960 BAL 138 384 67 112 17 0 21 98 0 68 72 .292 .403 .500
1961 BAL 148 486 96 147 25 2 46 141 1 96 106 .302 .423 .646
1962 BAL 152 545 80 137 21 1 33 87 1 77 100 .251 .346 .475
1963 BAL 145 496 65 123 16 1 24 72 1 76 101 .248 .353 .429
1964 KCA 136 439 71 110 10 0 28 71 0 84 122 .251 .372 .465
1965 TOT 119 345 36 84 16 1 17 53 0 43 98 .243 .337 .443
1965 KCA 38 118 14 29 5 0 10 22 0 9 26 .246 .305 .542
1965 HOU 81 227 22 55 11 1 7 31 0 34 72 .242 .352 .392
1966 TOT 82 191 18 41 7 1 9 22 0 26 57 .215 .321 .403
1966 HOU 49 144 16 35 6 1 7 18 0 21 39 .243 .355 .444
1966 CLE 33 47 2 6 1 0 2 4 0 5 18 .128 .212 .277
9 Seasons 936 2922 434 759 113 6 179 549 3 475 663 .260 .368 .486
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/18/2009.


He certainly was no slouch in the couple seasons surrounding his 1961 campaign.  But anyone expecting the production they got out of him in that year was surely disappointed.

Coghlan, Bailey are 2009 Rookies of the Year

Rookie of the Year is always such a tenuous award.  Sometimes it’s given to a solid steady but unspectacular player (*cough* Bobby Crosby *cough*) who had the luck of not getting hurt his first year in the majors. 

This year’s winners??  Outfielder Chris Coghlan of the Marlins and reliever Andrew Bailey of the A’s. 

Our own Teddy Ballgame (who knows more about the young talent in the majors than I ever will) did his predictions of the Rookie of the Year award in mid September.  He wrong on both counts but I’ll give him credit.  His pick, Elvis Andrus both placed second in the voting in the AL.  As for his pick of Dexter Fowler??  Well… he barely made a showing, getting one third place vote.

Both votes were close especially the Reds’ J.A. Happ who came within 11 votes of Coghlan. 

Coghlan batted .321 in 128 games with 84 runs scored and a pretty impressive .390 on-base percentage.  As for Bailey (who by the way, our guest poster Shawn Lee DID pick as the Rookie of the Year in the midst of his Cy Young Predictions… nice call, Shawn!), he saved 26 games for the A’s with a 1.84 ERA.  He also had a tasty BB/K ratio at 24/91.

The last reliever to win the ROY in either league was

Kazuhiro Sasaki in 2000.

Good luck next year, Teddy.

Thoughts on the 2009 Gold Glove Awards

The 2009 Gold Gloves were presented the other day.  Generally speaking, what struck me was this.  With an award that used to be awarded so traditionally, only two winners have more four to their credit.  Outfielders Ichiro Suzuki and Torii Hunter both have nine Gold Glove Awards on their mantle.  In case you’re wondering, they’re 6th on the all-time list for outfielders (they have six more to go to catch Roberto Clemente).

Some thoughts on a few of the Gold Glove award winners:

Ryan Zimmerman finally got his Gold Glove.  The cynic in me says that he finally hit well enough to deserve the award.  He hit better than David Wright who somehow got it the past two years.  Zim led the NL in assists and was 2nd in putouts.

While Jimmy Rollins won the Gold glove for shortstop, my vote would have gone to Troy Tulowitzki.  Tulo was in the top two in the league in fielding percentage, putouts, zone rating, total chances, and assists.  Rollins had the advantage of leading the NL in fielding percentage, an overrated stat, in my opinion. 

I’m a big Orlando Hudson fan.  Let’s get that out of the way.  But I was a bit surprised when he got the award this year.  It was his fourth one of his career but last year, due to his injuries, Brandon Phillips took it away from him.  Baseball is such a game of tradition.  Despite his deserving it, I wasn’t sure if the coaches would give it back to him.

I’ve been critical of Derek Jeter’s glove work in the past but word has it his fielding has really taken a turn for the better.  That and a slightly weak (Orlando Cabrera excluded) competition, Jeter deserved it this time.

Outfielder and Pitcher Gold Gloves… almost irrelevant in most cases.  in the cases they are relevant, they get ignored for those who are good with the stick. 

NL Gold Glove Award winners

AL Gold Glove Award winners

Utley: A case for a losing World Series MVP?

Outside of possibly Johnny Damon who is currently hitting .381 with 5 runs scored and 4 rbis, the Yankees are without a clear choice of a World Series MVP at this point.  Is it outside the realm of possibilities that even if the Yankees win it all, Chase Utley be named for this honor?

Through Game 5 of the Series, Utley leads both teams in runs scored (6), rbis (8) and of course homeruns (5).  Not only that, he was primarily responsible for two of the Philadelphia Phillies victories. 

The last and only player to win the World Series MVP for a losing team, ironically, was a Yankee.  In 1960, it wasn’t World Series hero Bill Mazeroski who garnered the award but Bobby Richardson. 

4954Bobby_Richardson Secondbaseman Richardson went 11 for 30 (.367) and drove in 12 runs and scored eight behind two doubles, two triples and a homer.  Most impressive credentials, indeed. 

That all said, my prediction is that conventional practice will prevail and the winner will share the spoils.  Should the Phils pull one out, Chase will most likely get the honor. 

It’s a crap shoot if the Yankees win.  Most likely, it will depend on what happens tonight but I’m giving Damon the edge right now.