American League awards race
Originally Aired: Tuesday, August 25, 2009. This is a part of the 93-Second Sports Shot series. 93-Second Sports Shots air weekday evenings at 6pm.
With little over a month left in the Major League baseball Season, it's a good time to start predicting who will win some of the big awards at the close of the season. Today let's look at the AL awards picture.
In the American League, the MVP race is still wide open. Miguel Cabrera is having another steady season for the first place Tigers. Mark Teixeirais having a big first year for the Yankees, ranking second in the league in both homers and RBIs. The M&M boys in Minnesota, Joe Maeur and Justin Morneau, are both having tremendous seasons as well. Ultimately, it is Mauer who deserves the award. The Twins catcher is currently hitting .374, a territory rarely seen, especially considering the power Mauer has also displayed this season. Despite missing time at the start of the year, Mauer will end up with about 30 home runs and 100 runs batted in, and will be one of the first players in quite a while to combine such power and average. Tack on his gold glove-caliber defense behind the plate, and Mauer deserves the MVP over teammate Morneua and Teixeira, who both figure to receive plenty of votes.
The American League Cy Young Award race also has no clear-cut front runner. Roy Halladay has come back down to Earth since all those trade rumors began prior to the trade deadline, and his team has really struggled as well. Zach Greinke has also been more human, losing 5 of his last six starts, mostly thanks to a horrible Royals team, but his ERA has also risen significantly during that span. C.C. Sabathia leads the league in wins, but hasn't been as dominate as he has been in previous seasons. With no starter really distinguishing themselves, I think this is a good year to give a reliever the award. The best closer in the business Mariano Rivera, is having another superb season, and after years of dominance, deserves the Cy Young. His numbers this year are as good as ever; a sub-2.00 ERA, more strikeouts than innings pitched, 36 saves in 37 chances, and a microscopic WHIP. While almost all closers aren’t quite a sure thing, Rivera certainly is, and he deserves recognition in the form of a CY Young.
(August 27, 2009)