clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Thor’sLinks: MVP Day

New, 31 comments

I’m Betts’ing on Mookie, but how high will Trout end up?

Texas Rangers v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Tonight will be the announcement of the ultimate individual achievement award in MLB, the MVP. Unless, of course, your a Designated Hitter. DH of the Year Awards will be named next Tuesday. Honestly. I am not making that up. And, yes, somebody does have to win it.

As you know, my forecast for weeks and weeks has been Mookie Betts. Betts had a Troutian season of his own. Both Betts and Trout were out for extended periods of time (Trout actually appeared in 4 more games than Betts), but both guys were clearly the cream of MLB position players in 2018.

Betts did edge Trout in both bWAR and fWAR, which is kind of a litmus test for stat’s-minded observers. That, however, might have had something to do with Trout drawing walks. Betts stepped up to the plate only 6 times more that Mike, but he is credited with almost 50 more At Bats on the season. Most of that is Trout’s edge of 41 BB’s more than Betts. But 50 At Bats is an awful lot to work with in order to earn an edge of 0.7 bWAR or 0.6 fWAR. Betts did something with those “not walks”, and WAR noticed.

WAR also notices Betts’ defense, which was marvelous. Trout had a fantastic year on D by his own standards, but Betts was far more than that.

These last two points are why I predict Betts edging out Trout, although I think the Boston 108 wins and playoff certainty will both result in BBWA voters giving Betts a very dominant vote lead. So Betts winnign the MVP will nto be any upset in my mind. Trout coming in anything further down that 2nd WOULD be an upset, and an injustice.

By the way, Mookie playing for a playoff team versus Trout playing for the motions and process of yet another lost season is not something that should be taken into consideration. Ever. Think of it this way: two people go out and purchase a brand-new Lamborghini. Both take their Lambo out to the track and win a couple of races. But then one has his primary daily driving car die and he needs to use that Lambo the rest of the year getting to and from work and keeping his job, while the other gets to keep going to the track and win more races, ultimately winning a racing title. Now both of those Lambos are back in the garage. Which one proved to be more the more valuable asset? Besides, any “race” to make the playoffs ended for the Red Sox in early August.

But let’s move on with some Should-Be-Award-Winning-But-Always-Snubbed-HaloLinks:


I am going to keep this up here until the event, as a reminder. JeffJoiner directs us all to the annual opportunity for we fans to join the Halos in giving back to our community. The Groundskeepers are hosting their 12th Annual Canned Food Drive Friday, November 16th thru Sunday, November 18th at Angel Stadium. UPDATE: I am trying to get a better link out of the LAA Front Office for you all. In the meantime, rely on JeffJoiner info here.


A Little Bit Of Angels News

We need a blockbuster winter move. Or, in our parlance, “Big Splash”. ESPN suggests Patrick Corbin, merely the 3rd best FA in the market. Yeah, that would certainly qualify............

Jeff Passan had fun spending way too much time beating up on butt-hurt MFY twitter accounts..........

Is it just me, or have all the LAA prospects in the AFL been tanking ever since they held their All-Star break? Monday and Tuesday reviews are not so shiny as they were earlier..........

Mark Langston is getting inducted into the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame............


Everywhere In Baseball

Jacob deGrom and Blake Snell were named NL and AL Cy Young Award winners, respectively. Both, IMHO, fully deserving. The deGrom one will be the thing to make hunting through Twitter and article comments the most fun. If only I had the power to revoke fan cards. First up would be this guy on Yahoo!: “Love Jake BUT sorry, he pitched JUST enough to lose the games. If the Mets got 1, he gave up 2, if they got shut out, he gave up 1. Not a winning pitcher, 10 wins is a joke. What pressure? They were 20 games under .500 most of the season. Steve Carlton managed 27 wins on a dead last Phillies team....THAT deserved the Cy Young !!”..........And THIS is wet towel with which I would slap idiots as I revoke their card..........

When you are a Boston or a New York fan - or a media outlet that serves a Boston or New York fan - any individual accomplishment above average should entitle your local hero to all the national accolades. It’s what drives the rest of us batty. So why didn’t Alex Cora win AL Manager of the Year? Well, not being able to figure out exactly what a manager does is one problem. This is the Grant Brisbee perspective to which I linked yesterday. The other problem is a franchise that dumped their entire farm system, and outspent everything else in MLB, to go all in with their competitive window, stocking up the cupboards with a juggernaut that merely did what most people thought they would do all along..........

The Orioles look to hire Assistant GM Mike Elias away from Houston, to become the new Baltimore top GM.....So remember that new LAA managerial search that included that hot commodity of Joe Espada, Astros bench coach? Yeah, I wonder what happens to Espada NOW?..........

The Dodgers, though, they seem to be getting cheap with their purse strings. At least when it comes to manager Dave Roberts..........

Yasmani Grandal, a guy who chose not to sign his QO and is a tasty Free Agent catcher (coming from the POV of a team that need a tasty catcher), should be a hot commodity. Certainly, that is what Grandal and his agent are expecting. I wouldn’t be shocked to see him sign late, however, as his playoff struggles drop his actual market value below what he thought he would be worth back in early August when his season was peaking..........

The Dodgers trading away Yasiel Puig while Puig is still in the arb years phase of his career would be a fine Christmas stocking gift to wave at Dodger fans, who once brandished Puig as their obvious answer to Mike Trout..........

Japan took the exhibition series versus the MLB “All Stars”, winning the latest game 6-5 to clinch. Of course, we smugly sit over here and convince ourselves that we didn’t really use all of our best “stars”. But not knowing the Japan leagues, I wonder whether or not Japanese fans could make the same claim? I guess exhibition series’ are a crapshoot, too?..........Also, why is that annual series never played here? It’s not as if we still need to barnstorm Japan in order to promote expansion of the game any longer..........

The last 2% of MLB caps made here in America, shall be no more. New Era is closing the plant, meaning 100% of MLB caps will be made elsewhere. New Era is well aware that this is a bad look (“baseball, hot dogs, apple pie” and all that), so they have holding on to one small plant in Opa Locka, Florida to make the caps that MLB players actually wear during games....The plant being closed is in the “hamlet” of Derby (which we would call a suburb of Buffalo), which is the home-town factory for the Buffalo-based company. The homies ain’t happy.....And now ALL of the New Era caps will be of a second-class quality.........

I forgot this yesterday. MLB is opening up a special summer league for select High School talent. Are there not already a plethora of summer leagues and travel ball for elite teen-aged baseball players already chewing up teen-aged pitching arms already all across the country?..........

Here is an excellent physics study about baseball, center of gravity versus center of mass, and the notion that improved manufacturing processes might be shrinking the distance between the two, improving flight trajectories, and resulting in more home runs being hit..........

The Tampa Bay Rays ownership (headed up by Stuart Sternberg, a Wall Street financier) are fast running out of time to line up a party other than themselves to pay for that shiny new stadium they want to build in Ybor City. The deadline as stated in their current lease is December 31 of this year. If they can’t get that, they are stuck at The Trop through 2027. The great news for the owners, however, is that we just finished up the mid-term elections. Tampa officials are now safe in their seats away from angry taxpayers for another couple of years. So now they are free to hand over taxpayer money to the MLB. hey, Sternberg is only a financier. That means that he is expert on managing other people’s money. He ain’t about having other people manage his own........

This is where all those territory rules that drive broadcast coverage and end up in blackout bullshit that make us fans all insane come back to bite MLB and MLB owners in the ass. Never forget that it’s a big reason why the Angels have to play a bunch of game in an Oakland toilet every year, as a consequence of the A’s making the mistake of trying to help out the Giants one time, only to see the Giants flip that into a permanent advantage. Well, still ongoing in the greater DC area is the mess that Bud Selig created when he cronied the Expos into Washington, shoe-horning them deep inside the existing Orioles broadcast rights territory. That battle still rages, and the greater community of MLB owners are still being dragged into the dispute..............


The Duffle Bag

Stuff.........Job Posting: Pirates software developer..........About that quickly turning idiotic MiLB rebranding, mine would be The Inglewood Chill Kangaroos..........I thought that the whole point of baseball was to be a social pastime? I guess that Japan didn’t get that memo..........While GMs meet in Carlsbad, and owners meet in Atlanta, mascots meet in Kansas City..........The Marlins, having already removed their pachinko machine, are planning to fill that vacated space with more empty seats..........MLBTR has launched this year’s version of their Free Agnet landing contest. I wonder if there is a prize?.........The gods of winter adored Joe Mauer..........Baseball life, TOOTBLAN in a pickle jar...........