AL Rookie of the Year - Mike Trout, OF, LA Angels
Pretty much a no brainer here, since Trout was arguably the most dominant and disruptive player in baseball. To understand how much better he was check this out. Trout: 18 HR, 23 SB, 72 R, 43 RBI Yoenis Cespades: 23 HR, 16 SB, 70 R, 82 RBI. Sure those numbers favor Cespades, but the kicker is that those are Cespades full 2012 numbers against what Trout put up post All Star break...yeah, dominant.
NL Rookie of the Year - Bryce Harper, OF, Washington Nationals
Wade Miley put together a nice season in Arizona, but ultimately I'm going with the everyday guy on a playoff team. It also helps when that guy hits 22 bombs, steals 18 and scores 98 runs.
AL Manager of the Year - Terry Francona
Sure Francona didn't manage in 2012, but Boston finished with 21 fewer wins in 2012 under the not so capable direction of Bobby Valentine than they did with Francona in 2011. I'm also hoping Francona will use some of the good mojo of being the Joe Mandi 2012 AL Manager of the Year as he leads the Indians in 2013, can't hurt.
NL Manager of the Year - Davey Johnson, Washington Nationals
His team won the most games in baseball, not too shabby.
AL Cy Young - Justin Verlander, SP, Detroit Tigers
Verlander and David Price put up very similar numbers, Price had more wins (for whatever that's worth...which is apparently a lot to baseball writers) and a better ERA, while Verlander had more Ks, a better WHIP and a better opponents batting average. I give the nod to Verlander due to his impressive September (5-1, 1.93 ERA) to lead his team to the playoffs.
NL Cy Young - Clayton Kershaw, SP, LA Dodgers
Another tough choice between Kershaw and R.A. Dickey, but Kershaw had a better ERA, WHIP and opponent's batting average. Also, Dickey gets by with a gimmick knuckleball, his award is that he gets to make a living throwing 65 miles per hour.
AL Most Valuable Player - Miguel Cabrera, 3B, Detroit Tigers
If Mike Trout starts the season in The Show he's probably the AL MVP. Seriously, Trout might have scored 150 runs...which would have been nearly 40% better than the next best player in the AL (Cabrera at 109) and put him in the company of only 11 players since 1900, pretty impressive since he also added 30 homers and 49 RBI in his abbreviated season. But the Angels kept Trout in AAA for nearly a month and Miguel Cabrera was pretty darn impressive in his own right...you know, like Triple Crown impressive. Cabrera hit for average, he hit for power, he hit when runners were in scoring position and he hit his team into the playoffs, if that's not an MVP then I don't know what is.
NL Most Valuable Player - Ryan Braun, OF, Milwaukee Brewers
Braun just had the best numbers in the NL. He had more runs, RBI and HRs than Andrew McCutchen and Buster Posey, while slightly trailing those two in batting average. Posey, as a catcher, will garner some attention, but there isn't one GM in MLB that would take Posey and an average OF over Braun and an average catcher. Braun was just that far ahead of everyone else in the NL this year.
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