Greatest Car Ride Part 2

Now I am not exactly sure how I got to this next point of arbitration and draft picks in the MLB. It must have come from the talk about Gausman and Bundy because they were early round draft picks in the MLB. This got me into the change in the balance of trades when the new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) was created before the 2012 MLB season and draft. My mind just went crazy trying to explain the value of trades created by baseball’s crazy rules to Heather and yes I researched some of these facts after the fact because I didn’t know all of this off the top of my head… just most of it.

Albert Pujols signing with the LA Angels

Albert Pujols signing with the LA Angels

The CBA prior to 2012 had definitions for free agents. The players that were considered type A free agents by Elias Sports Bureau were in the top 20 percent of players at their position over the past two years. Type B free agents were players who were not in the top 20 percent, but were in the top 40. The MLB uses the Elias Sports Bureau’s designations to determine the type A and B free agents. The free agent definitions gave the teams that lost them some compensation. I’ll use an actual example to explain the compensation. In the offseason prior to the 2012 season, the Los Angeles Angels signed Albert Pujols, a type A free agent, to a ridiculous contract. Pujols had previously played for the St. Louis Cardinals. Because the Angels signed Pujols as a type A players, they had to give the Cardinals their top pick in the upcoming MLB draft. The Cardinals also received a compensation pick in the “sandwich round” between the first and second round. If a team loses a type B free agent, they are given the compensation pick in the “sandwich round” but they do not get the first pick of the team that sign them. The only exception to this rule was if a team had a first round pick in the top half of the first round when they signed a type A free agent. The team that signed the type A player would only have to give up a second round pick. The MLB put this in place to try and increase competitive balance of some kind. How this relates to the balance of trades is that prior to 2012 when a team traded for a player that was to be considered a type A free agent for just half the year, they would still get the first round draft pick of the team that signed them. An example of this would be the Mark Teixeira trade in 2008. Teixeira was traded from the Atlanta Braves to the Los Angeles Angels for two young players including Casey Kotchman. The Angels made this trade in an effort to push themselves over the top to win a World Series. They ended up winning 100 games but lost in the ALDS to the Red Sox. The following off season, the New York Yankees signed Teixeira as a type A free agent. The Angels still received compensation of a first round pick from the Yankees and a “sandwich round” pick even though he was only on the Angels for less than half a season.

Now starting in 2012, the rules changed some. Free agents no longer had designations of how good they were. The way a team earns compensation for free agents being lost was by offering a contract that was the average of the 125 richest contracts in the game. An example of this would be the Kyle Lohse situation. The Cardinals offered Kyle Lohse a contract that was equal to the average of the 125 richest contracts. This meant the Cardinals would receive compensation of a first round pick if Lohse signed anywhere else. This left a lot of teams in a pickle. They did not want to have to sign Lohse to a big contract and lose their first round pick because he isn’t a front of the rotation starter and does not get a lot of strikeouts and actually… he’s just not a good pitcher most of the time. He just had a good contract year. This would be why I was happy the Orioles did not sign him. Fortunately for Lohse, the Milwaukee Brewers signed him to a 3 year 33 million dollar contract and gave up their first round pick to the Cardinals for him. This turned out to really screw the Brewers because they are an organization that should be going into rebuilding mode, but it’s kind of hard to do that when you do not have talent in the majors to acquire prospects and you don’t have a first round pick to get a top one. However, an exception to this rule is that you must have the player under contract for a full season to receive compensation for him leaving the club. An example of this is Zack Greinke being traded to the Los Angeles Angels right before the trade deadline in the 2012 season. He was traded to the Angels from the Brewers in exchange for a bundle of prospects with Jean Segura headlining them. During the offseason prior to 2013, he signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers instead of resigning with the Angels.  The Angels did not receive the Dodgers first round pick even though they offered him a contract richer than the average of the top 125 players because Greinke had not been with the team for more than a year.

Los Angeles Angels

Los Angeles Angels

Now how have these rules changed the outlook of the Los Angeles Angels? The Angels trades for Teixeira in 2008 and Greinke in 2012 can show these differences. The Teixeira trade in 2008 sent Casey Kotchman and a minor league pitcher to the Braves for Teixeira. Kotchman was a first round pick in 2001 and had a great year in 2007 and was regarded as the Angels first baseman of the future. In 2008, the Angels risked losing their first baseman of the future and Teixeira in the off season because he was only signed through the rest of the season to try and win a World Series. They failed, but when Teixeira bolted for a ton of money being offered by the New York Yankees, the Angels got their first round pick and a “sandwich round” pick. And guess who the Angels turned the Yankees first round pick into? Yes that’s right, my boy, Mike Trout and he is the best player now for the Angels and will be for many years in the future. Now the Angels didn’t have the same luck when they traded for Zack Greinke in 2012. They traded two minor league pitchers along with their second best prospect Jean Segura to the Milwaukee Brewers as stated above. Segura was considered a middle infielder because the Angels didn’t know if they were going to play him at 2nd base or shortstop. The Brewers decided to play him at shortstop and he has been a top hitter in their line up this year with a .340 batting average, 9 home runs, 29 runs batted in (RBI), and 17 stolen bases. This kind of production would be extremely useful to the Angels. However, the Angels were unable to make the playoffs in 2012 and as I said earlier, lost Greinke to the Dodgers without getting any compensation. The Angels can’t seem to buy a win this year even with their massive payroll. They have no minor league talent to start rebuilding the team with. Since they lost their first round pick to the Texas Rangers when the Angels signed Josh Hamilton, they had no picks to help rebuild their team this year. So the outlook does not look good for the Angels unless Hamilton and Pujols suddenly figure out how to get back to their old great form and can hold it for the next two-three years while the Angels try to draft well and rebuild the farm system.

Baltimore Orioles

Baltimore Orioles

After all of this trade talk, I was able to get back to the Baltimore Orioles and talk about a potential trade with the Philadelphia Phillies that could possibly put the Orioles over the top this year. The Orioles have production from almost every position except second base. They cannot get any production from that position this season for some reason. Ryan Flaherty and Alexi Casilla have not produced, with batting averages of .172 and .203 respectively. They also have had inconsistent pitching. Some outings a pitcher will only give up a run or two and the next outing they’ll give up 8 runs. It’s ridiculous and hard to watch as a fan. Now the Phillies have been struggling this year. They do not look like contenders and may barely finish above .500. They probably need to start their rebuilding process now. They have a lot of old players with huge contracts that make up their ridiculous payroll of 170,760,689 dollars… that’s a lot of money for a team to barely finish above .500. The  Phillies have been rumored to trade two players. Cliff Lee has been rumored because he has been good and could bring back the Phillies some prospects and it would get his contract that still has 77.5 million dollars on it over 3 years. The other player is Chase Utley because before he got hurt, he had been playing great and he becomes a free agent next year anyway. And what do you know, those are the Orioles needs. Could there be a possible deal there? Maybe. It all depends on how each team values the players. The Orioles wouldn’t part ways with Dylan Bundy, but maybe they would part ways with Kevin Gausman. To get Utley as well, they would probably have to throw in their top hitting prospect in Jonathan Schoop, who is on the DL now with a stress fracture in his back. Would this deal work? The Orioles give up Gausman, projected number 2 starter with a floor of a number 4 starter, and Schoop, who is a projected starter at either 3rd base, 2nd base, or shortstop. All of these positions are needed by the Phillies in their farm system. They could use an infielder for the future in Schoop and they could decide what position they want him to play. Gausman would be valuable because you can never have enough pitching. The Phillies give up Lee and Utley. This leaves the Orioles with the number 1 starter that they have needed to help push them over the top. Utley would give them the 2nd baseman for this year that would be the final piece in their order to make it dangerous 1 through 9. There are three things that would make this trade not work. The first hurdle would be the Orioles willingness to take on a contract that big for a pitcher. A contract that is fully guaranteed, that’s how all baseball contracts are, for a pitcher that is 34 and will be 35 by the end of this season. Pitchers tend to break down fast as they age so the Orioles would be worried about that. The second hurdle would be the Orioles’ front office’s goals of winning now and in the future. Which one do they value more? If they want to win now, they would pull the trigger on this trade most likely. However, if they want to be in contention with Gausman and Schoop for the next 5-6 years, they’ll probably hold off on making this trade and hope they steal a wild card spot again. The third hurdle would be the Phillies evaluation of these prospects. Do they think they are valuable enough for two players who have been fan favorites in Philadelphia? This would be an interesting trade scenario. It probably won’t happen in real life, but I believe it is a good hypothetical trade for both teams depending on their goals for now and the future.

We then arrived at Bucknell and I was shocked at how fast the ride went. Driving for about 3 hours just talking about baseball made this the greatest drive ever. I thanked Heather then and I’ll thank her now for listening to me just talk the whole way. It was an awesome trip back to school that I’ll never forget.

Greg Danchik

Greatest Car Ride Part 1

Last weekend, I went home from Bucknell University with Heather for her to meet my family at my sister’s graduation party. We had to get back to Bucknell Sunday night because I had work Monday morning. When the car ride started, I put on the Fantasy Sports SiriusXM radio channel because they talk about all sports and teams and players throughout the entire country, rather than just LeBron and Tim Tebow on ESPN. Also I enjoy playing fantasy sports as a hobby and as a way to put all my sports knowledge to use. The channel mentioned something about different types of fantasy baseball leagues, and Heather asked a question about it so I just went on a stream of conscious lecture of anything that came to my mind.

I started off explaining the different leagues that there are in fantasy baseball. The first big difference is rotisserie and head to head leagues. My personal preference for fantasy baseball leagues are rotisserie leagues that last the whole season.  Head to head leagues have a problem in that they do not really allow for the best team to win because they are on a week by week basis. This is okay for fantasy football because part of fantasy football is picking each specific matchup week to week. Also, football is more of a sprint while baseball is a marathon. With 162 games, you cannot judge a team based on a 7 day segment. If you had Mike Trout all year last year, he carried your team but when the last month of the season rolled around, which is the time when fantasy head to head playoffs would be, he had cooled off and a team with him on it, may not have done well because his stats for that week weren’t great even though his 2012 numbers were historic. That is why my preference is a yearlong rotisserie league. It counts all the stats over the course of the year of each of your starters every day and then ranks you based on these categories. For example, if it’s a ten team league and you are first in home runs, you get 10 points for that category, if you finish second, you get 9 points, and so on.

Leagues can also be considered mixed, AL, or NL leagues. In a mixed league, you can use all the players in the MLB, while AL and NL leagues only allow you to use players from their respective leagues. These are more challenging as you need to know players that may not be consistent starters but may just be platoon players that can help you out because they perform well when they do get the plate appearances. There are also a variety of different categories that can be used in fantasy baseball leagues. The standard hitting categories are batting average, runs, runs batted in, home runs, and stolen bases. The standard pitching categories are wins, strikeouts, earned run average (ERA), walks plus hits over innings pitched (WHIP) and saves. These categories are what most fantasy sites and sports sites base there fantasy rankings on. However, there are a variety of fantasy leagues that use extra stats. The most common statistics that are used as the extra categories for hitters are walks and strikeouts and the categories for pitchers are quality starts and holds. These two categories are not as well known by many sports fans. A quality start is given to pitcher who pitches at least 6 innings and gives up no more than 3 runs. This is valuable stat because it is more indicative of how well a pitcher performs because it does not matter how well his offense performs. Holds are a statistic given to relievers who come into a game with less than a 3 run lead before the 9th inning and do not relinquish that lead before they are taken out of the game. This is a valuable stat in fantasy leagues because it gives value to relievers who do not get save opportunities. These relievers are sometimes actually better than the closers on their teams, specifically Kenley Jansen, Joaquin Benoit, and Ryan Cook among others. Leagues with holds make these players more valuable and much more in demand.

Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson

Once I was done explaining just some of the variety in fantasy baseball leagues, I just went into talking about different organizations, how they do business, and how effective they are. The talk about Kenley Jansen got me into the Dodgers and their new big spending ways since the ownership group containing Magic Johnson purchased the team on March 27, 2012 for 2 BILLION dollars… over a billion more than any other purchase of an MLB team. Since this purchase, the Dodgers have not been afraid to spend money. When Kenley Jansen’s heart problem resurfaced prior to the 2013 season, they gave Brandon League a 3 year 27 million dollar contract. Brandon League has a career 3.67 ERA and only had 60 saves prior to 2013. He did not deserve 9 million dollars a year to close, but the Dodgers don’t care with all the money they have in such a large market and a new ownership group creating more interest. They were able to trade good, but not top, prospects for players like Adrian Gonzalez, Hanley Ramirez, Carl Crawford, and Josh Beckett because they were willing to pay all the money on their ridiculous contracts. So far this season, it has not worked out for them, but over time if they learn to scout quality players, their money should allow them to field top teams for many years.

Michael Wacha

Michael Wacha

Kevin Gausman

Kevin Gausman

As I was finishing up my Dodgers talk, the radio mentioned something about Michael Wacha. Wacha is a Cardinals pitcher that was just called up Thursday, May 30th. Of course, everyone on the channel is raving about him and thinks he will be one of the next great starters to come from the Cardinals organization. He definitely is not the most highly touted pitching prospect that has been called up this year, behind Kevin Gausman and Jose Fernandez most notably. However, Wacha has been the most hyped because he is coming from an organization that just pumps out pitching prospects all the time and whenever they are called up, they are ready to pitch in the majors even if they are not highly rated prospects. So far this year, they have called up pitchers like Tyler Lyons and John Gast. Both of these pitchers are not highly touted prospects, but they have been serviceable in the majors and have helped the Cardinals to continue to win even with the plethora of pitching injuries. The Cardinals have also pumped out great pitchers such as Adam Wainwright and Shelby Miller, so when a good Cardinals prospect is called up, it is a big deal and almost everyone in the fantasy sports community believes they will be good. In contrast, the Orioles have done plenty to show that they have not been able to develop pitching. They have failed in developing Brian Matusz, Jake Arrieta, Zach Britton, and Chris Tillman who were all supposed to be top of the line starters. Chris Tillman has been okay this year and Brian Matusz has been good in the bullpen, but nowhere near their projections. So, when Kevin Gausman got called up on May 23rd, there was skepticism because of the previous history regarding Orioles pitchers. Now all of these players who have failed to live up to their hype were drafted by the previous baseball operations regime. Dan Duquette, Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations, and Buck Showalter, Manager, were the head of the baseball minds that drafted Dylan Bundy and Kevin Gausman. Therefore, I have been optimistic about Kevin Gausman and believe he will be at minimum a very serviceable pitcher in the major leagues for years to come. This optimism may also be because of my Orioles fandom. However, I do think that Dylan Bundy and Kevin Gausman will break the trend of failed Orioles pitching prospects and become good to great pitchers in the major leagues.

This conversation about the Orioles led to a conversation about draft picks and trades and how the balance of trades have been changed in recent years and then possible trades at the deadline in 2013 and the rest of the car ride is to be continued.

Greg Danchik

Manny Machado Profile/Projection

G AB R H TB 2B HR RBI BB SO SB CS AVG OBP SLG OPS WAR
Current 53 232 36 77 120 24 5 29 12 33 5 2 .332 .365 .517 .882 3.3
Prorated 155 678 105 225 351 70 18 85 35 97 15 6

Stats from Baseball Reference for Manny Machado

 

Manny Machado

Manny Machado

Manny Machado is one of the great young stars in Major League Baseball today. Drafted 3rd overall in the 2010 draft by the Baltimore Orioles, only behind Bryce Harper and Jameson Taillon. When drafted, people made comparisons to Alex Rodriguez because he is a big shortstop 6’ 2” and is from Miami. Right now, he is constantly compared to the two other young hitting stars in the game today, Bryce Harper and Mike Trout. Based on his value, current career path, and possible future career path, let’s see how he fits, or will fit, into baseball history.

Machado was drafted for his superb bat and defense at the shortstop position. He played this position for the majority of his minor league career; in fact he only played two games at 3rd base rather than shortstop. He entered the Major Leagues at age 20 last year on August 9th, 2012 (it is considered his age 19 season because he began the year at age 19). He came up and changed the Orioles team, which was slumping at the time. He also did not do it with his bat. His slash line of .262/.294/.445 was good for a rookie 20 year old in the MLB but would not have changed a team offensively. In fact, he changed the team defensively at third base with only 2 games experience in the minor leagues! The Orioles had one of the worst fielding percentages at third base before Machado was called up. And after he was called up, he only made 5 errors with a fielding percentage of .967 and also had one of the great defensive plays of 2012. The Orioles never looked back and made the playoffs for the first time in 15 years.

Machado is on a torrid pace in his first full season in the MLB. In his age 20 season, he is on pace to break a record that has been standing for 82 years. Using only 155 games and the average amount of AB’s in his current 53 games to calculate the amount of AB’s he will get this season, his projected amount of doubles is 70. This would break a record of 67 set in 1931 by Earl Webb. The rest of his statistics are good, but not nearly as great. He is projected to have 18 HR’s, 85 RBI’s, 15 SB’s, and a .332 BA.

Projecting Machado is an interesting task. The Alex Rodriguez comparisons are hard to make now that Machado has some significant MLB stats. Alex Rodriguez’s 20 year old season is one of the great seasons in MLB history and is only really comparable to Mike Trout’s 2012. A-Rod had 36 HR’s, 123 RBI’s, 15 SB’s, and a .358 BA. With a Wins Above Replacement (WAR) of 9.3 in his age 20 season, it is almost entirely unrealistic to think Manny Machado will have a WAR that high. Even though Machado’s already has a 3.3 WAR for this year, it will be hard to reach 9.3 for multiple reasons. The WAR for shortstops is naturally higher because it is a much harder defensive position than third position. The other reason is A-Rod has admitted to using steroids so his statistics may have been helped by performance enhancing drugs (PEDs). This makes projecting Manny Machado through A-Rod a tough task because of these factors.

Machado does compare well to a similar big bodied shortstop that happened to play with the Orioles as well, Cal Ripken Jr. Ripken in his first full season (Age 21) in the majors had 28 HR’s, 93 RBI’s, 3 SB’s and a .264 BA. Ripken’s WAR was only at 2.6 for that whole season. Machado has already surpassed that and I believe will continue to get greater as the season goes on. Machado does not appear to have as much homerun power as Ripken at this stage in his career. Machado almost has as many doubles (24) as Ripken (32) had his entire season in just 53 games. Machado has more speed than Ripken but appears to be on a comparable season to Ripken except with less homerun power and more gap to gap power and speed. The greater batting average also bodes well for Machado. If Machado has a career similar to Ripken’s, he will go down as one of the all-time greats in MLB history.

Overall, my opinion from watching him and looking at statistics is that Machado’s future is a bright one. He has a smooth swing from the right side and has projectable power as he continues to grow into is large 6’ 2” frame. His overall value as a player is very dependent on whether or not he goes back to his natural position of shortstop. He would become the man that runs the infield and controls the game the most besides the catcher. I believe he will go back after JJ Hardy’s contract runs out in 2015 or in the summer of 2014. I say the summer of 2014 because if for some reason the Orioles fall out of contention, they could trade JJ Hardy to a contender for some prospects. Then they could move Machado to shortstop then call up 3rd base/infield prospect Johathan Schoop to play third base as he should be ready by that time. If he moves to shortstop, he could turn out to be one of the great offensive shortstops of all-time. I don’t believe he will put up big power numbers like A-Rod or Cal Ripken. I do, however, think he will be an as good or better fielder than those two and have a higher batting average. I think he will probably be a .310 hitter with around 30 homeruns in his prime and good to great defense while playing shortstop and then back to third once he gets older, like Rodriguez and Ripken. This would lead to a great career. I can’t guarantee these numbers but barring injury I believe he will have a great career. For my sake as an Orioles fan, I hope he stay an Oriole through most of his career as well. That will depend on whether they can sign him to a cheap contract through his arbitration years (2016-2019) and possibly through some of the first years of free agency post 2019. It may be hard to keep the whole core that is there now together, but hopefully they can keep Machado around for a long time.

May 30, 2013

Greg Danchik

AL MVP 2012– Cabrera vs. Trout

Stats:

Player Runs HR RBI SB BB
Cabrera 109 44 139 4 66
Trout 129 30 83 49 67
Trout Prorated 140 32 90 53 73

 

 

 

AVG OBP SLUG WAR Offensive WAR Rdrs
.330 .393 .606 6.9 7.5 -4
.326 .399 .564 10.7 8.6 21

WAR, Offensive WAR and Defensive Runs Saved above the Average from Baseball Reference. Trout prorated stats are if he had the same amount of PA as Cabrera.

 

AL playoff picture if the season started the day Mike Trout got called up.

AL West Champ- A’s 83-58

AL Central Champ- Tigers 78-64

Al East Champ- NYY 84-59

AL Wild Card 1- Angels 83-59

AL Wild Card 2- Orioles 81-61

Out of the postseason- Rangers (78-64), Rays and White Sox

Cabrera vs Trout

Here’s the debate… who should win the AL MVP? Miguel Cabrera did something that hasn’t been done since 1967. He won the Triple Crown, a mystical goal that seemed it would never be reached after players have been close the past three years. He also did it with sole possession of each of the categories. Mike Trout, a rookie called up April 28th, had a remarkable season and turned around the Angels season. He is the first player in baseball history with 125 runs, 40 SBs and 30 HRs. He is also the first player to join the 30/40 club as a 20 year old, the youngest member.

Using classic statistics, this debate is pretty close. Cabrera was first in BA and Trout was second by 4 points. Cabrera had more HRs and RBIs (obviously), but Trout had more runs (Cabrera was second in runs), more walks and over 10 times as many steals. I think the most impressive statistics here are the walks and steals. Obviously Trout would have more steals, he is much faster and it is a big part of his game. However, think of how many times he put himself into scoring position after hitting a weak single. This is probably one of the reasons his runs are so high as well. This definitely puts more value towards Trout. Also, the walks are extremely impressive to me. Trout, a rookie, came up into the majors and had enough plate discipline to draw more walks than Miguel Cabrera, one of the greatest hitters of this generation. Granted, Cabrera had Prince Fielder as his protection and pitchers probably feared walking him. I still believe Trout had a great accomplishment by having more walks than Cabrera. Also from the leadoff spot, he helps out a team so much by being able to be on base for the strong part of the lineup.

Now using sabermetrics, this debate turns toward Trout in a heartbeat. Using wins above replacement (WAR) from Baseball Reference, Trout has a WAR of 10.7. The last player to have a WAR above 10 was Barry Bonds. Miguel Cabrera has a WAR of 6.9. This actually a great WAR. However, according the Baseball Reference, an MVP level WAR is 8 or higher and 6.9 is not that. The first thing that will come to mind is “oh that takes into account defense too much.” Wrong. According to just Offensive WAR, Trout still has a higher WAR, 8.6, to Cabrera’s 7.5. The difference in this WAR comes from the difference in steals because of how important they are offensively even though they are often over looked. They help create runs by simply being in scoring position and by throwing pitchers off their game. When a speedster, like Trout, is on base, it will get into the pitcher’s head. Pitchers start to focus on the runner and not the batter. That usually leads to a pitch that is left up in the zone and then is driven into the gap. That’s when Trout comes all the way from first to score.

Defensively, the argument isn’t close as to who should win the MVP. Trout saved 21 more runs than the average OF this season, while Cabrera cost his team 4 runs compared to the average. Also, center field, I would argue, is the 3rd hardest position to play in baseball besides catcher and shortstop. He covers so much ground and he robbed HR’s and had one of the best plays of the year. Cabrera did switch positions to have Fielder come to the Tigers, but that shouldn’t be relevant in the voting because it is about this year and this year only. This year, Cabrera did not have a great defensive year.

From the team perspective, I had the AL playoff scenario if the season started when Mike Trout was called up. First we see that the Angels have a better record than the Tigers by FIVE games… FIVE! That’s huge. And clearly the Angels played in harder division with the A’s beating them because of the uneven schedule at the beginning of the year in this hypothetical scenario. Also another key aspect of this scenario, the Rangers are OUT of the playoffs and they clinched a playoff spot before anyone else in the AL in the actual season. That puts into perspective how important the beginning of the season is compared to the end. Each game counts the same until you are into the postseason. So the argument that Cabrera played better down the stretch is irrelevant; especially when the MVP is for the whole season, not just the month of September. Each game counts equally, a win is a win and a loss is a loss.

Trout also basically brought the Angels back from the dead. They were in last place and it was hard to even watch the games. They just could not hit the ball and nothing was going their way. It was awful. Once Trout got up, everything changed. The team had a new fire and clearly shown by their record since he got called up, he had a huge impact, offensively and defensively.

Overall, Trout deserves the MVP. I think if there was an offensive player of the year award, Cabrera would win and Trout would be an extremely close second. However, the MVP is about offense and defense and clearly combining both of these parts of baseball, Trout had the better season. He saved runs for his team and did not cost them any. He created runs on offense with his power, speed, and ability to get on base. It was an incredible season and he is only a rookie. He could be on his way to one of the best careers in baseball history, but only time will tell. In reality, I think the baseball writers will vote Miguel Cabrera the MVP. They are old school guys and the Triple Crown, an amazing achievement, is such a mythical achievement that I believe that they think if someone wins the Triple Crown he deserves the MVP. In my book, it will be Trout. In reality, we will find out after the World Series.

October 4, 2012

Greg Danchik