Monday, January 26, 2015

Awards Time

OK, Awards time! This little posting originated on the league chat board, and someone suggested posted it on the blog for posterity. I've been doing these writeups for several years now.

AL RoY: Really, there are two candidates. Javier Jimenez and Greg Howell contributed, but were 4 and 5 in the group with seasons that established them as major league starters but not stars. Taylor Barkley is a weird case - he threw in 46 ML games last season, but somehow retained eligibility? - and was good not great as a 26 save closer with a highish ERA (4.36). Dwayne Stanley was 10-7 with a 3.58 ERA for a .500 team, while Arismendy Perez jumped from High A to the ML and went 11-4 and a 3.14 in a much more hitter-friendly park. I'll go for Perez here.

NL RoY: In one of WIS' oddities, they didn't list any of Tito Martin's stats because he is listed as a 3B, but didn't play 3B this season. Martin put up decent numbers (.255/.326/.440 with 44 doubles), mostly in LF. Jack Meluskey is in the similar boat of nice numbers, but not at the level of the top candidates. Bill Lincoln began his career with a solid season of starting pitching, but isn't the best candidate at his position or on his team. The two real contenders are pitcher Barry Woods and LF Julian Rodriguez. Both put up more than respectable numbers for playoff contender teams. Rodriguez play more games, and was a solid 3/5 hitter with 41 HRs and a .920 OPS; Woods took awhile to lock up a starting slot, but excelled once he was there with a 16-5 record and 2.11 ERA in 29 games/23 starts. In the offense v defense, I'll go defense and Barry Woods here - seriously good numbers, worthy of the Cy Young discussion.

AL Cy: Don Locke was an important piece of a legitimate playoff team, but his ERA and OAvg is too high to be in the mix. Hector Gardel was better, but he threw almost 25 innings less than the next competitor. The top three all play in similar stadiums, with Cincinnati slightly more prone to HRs. All pitched for playoff teams. I'll go for Alexi Hernandez in third - great year, with the best record and a perfect game, but allowed more hits than IP and had the highest ERA. Scooter Lee or Bengie Cayones? If I were going like the NL, I would go for Bengie as the upset. But, the truth is, this is a more apples to apples matchup than in the NL, and Scooter was a tastier apple. He had the best of virtually every number except walks. One for the thumb for Scooter.

(A disclaimer note: I traded Bengie Cayones at the start of his career in a trade that netted me Juan Dominguez. Dominguez has been amazing, and netted an MVP during his Horrorshow career, but I shake my head at trading Cayones to this day.)

NL Cy: Hard-fought battle here. Ezequiel Chacin is solid, but with a higher ERA, lowish K/9, and 11 losses, he's bottom of the 5. Barry Woods had a great season (Rookie of the Year!), but only had 23 starts and 179 innings. Diego Sojo put in yeoman's work, throwing over 247 innings with a really solid record. He struck people out at a 9.33 clip, and he was the top starter in the league. Tori Miles was a top-notch closer with 41 saves and the best ERA in the bunch. Bronson Boyle threw less than any of them, but saved almost every appearance (49 saves in 55 games!) in a hitters park, all from a 67 Overall guy. In a normal year, Sojo is the choice, but you expect it out of Sojo. This year I have to honor the unexpected. Boyle for Cy Young.

AL MVP: Frankie Nichting was a solid player out of the leadoff spot, but not at the level of the top three. Will Moore is much the same, a solid mix of power and speed from the leadoff spot with the additional boost of a good CF, but not in the top. William Barfield was his usual exceptional, and led his team to playoff contention, and Bronson Lemke was much the best for a bad team. However, Jim Kazmir brought the power, with comparable or better numbers in only 132 games. I wish we had gotten to see 30 more games of that season. In any case, I'll go Kazmir over a virtual tie in Barfield and Lemke.

(Another Disclaimer Note: Will Moore is a proud Horrorshow star. So, conflict of interest and all of that.)

NL MVP: Raul Picasso was a good contact hitter, but contact 1Bs never work for an MVP. Francicso Ramirez was the only non-1B is the mix, but he wasn't great in the field, and his batting was weakest of them all. Greg Collins is a better version of Picasso without the power, but not the best. Dicky Scheffer is often the best (5 MVPS to his name), and 48 HRs make a great case, but not this year. Sal Becker was just stellar, a huge step above everyone this year. He was nearly 200 points better in OPS than his nearest MVP competitor! Pretty much says it all.

So, there's my choices: Kazmir, Becker, Lee, Boyle, Perez, and Woods. Any debate?

Oh, and a postscript. Oddly enough, that really is his name, Francicso Ramirez. Probably the most obvious example of a typo, but interesting in its offbeat nature. Good old Francicso.

And an idle musing: Are Jack Meluskey and Christopher Meluskey brothers?