Tuesday, July 16, 2013

MLB Midseason Awards: N.L. MVP Award

The NL MVP race does not have all the pizazz of the AL race, which has two guys with 30-plus home runs and the chance for a second triple crown in a row.

My contenders to win it would be Allen Craig, who is hitting .333 with 74 RBIs, Paul Goldschmidt at .313 with 21 home runs and 77 RBIs, and Michael Cuddyer, hitting .330 with 16 home runs and 55 RBIs.

I'd also give an honorable mention to Jean Segura, who has cooled off a bit of late, but is still hitting .325 with 121 hits and 27 stolen bases.  Segura has been killing it in fantasy, so gotta give him a mention.

Without too much conviction on my pick, I'll take Goldschmidt, who is putting up the best numbers on a team that, at the moment, is leading the division.

For other midseason awards, see below:
[Editor's note: This post is by John Trifone (@JohnnyT0122), who also contributes at our NFL site: Eat, Drink and Sleep Football (see John's archives).]

MLB Midseason Awards: N.L. Cy Young Award

The NL Cy Young has a lot of guys in the mix for the award at this juncture, with no one really standing head and shoulders above the rest.

Depending on your personal criteria, you can easily make a case for Adam Wainwright who is 12-5 with a 2.45 ERA, Matt Harvey 7-2 with a 2.35 ERA and a league-leading 147 strikeouts, Jeff Locke who is 8-2 with a 2.15 ERA, Patrick Corbin who is 11-1 with a 2.35 ERA, or Jordan Zimmerman who is 12-4 with a 2.58 ERA.

All are great choices with excellent records and ERAs. Some people will favor strikeouts, others favor wins/losses.

Personally, I'm an ERA guy. You can't control your run support, so I don't feel that wins/losses should be held against you for an individual award. While high strikeout totals do impress, I'm also not going to hold efficiency against a pitcher if he gets ground ball outs and throws fewer pitches than a power pitcher.

All that said, I'll give my midseason award to Clayton Kershaw, who is a mere 8-6 but has a 1.98 ERA.
The Dodgers started the season off poorly, and clearly Kershaw did not get a lot of run support early on. He is the only pitcher in baseball with a sub-2.00 ERA, and he has only eight wins.

If Kershaw can remain under two runs per game, it will put him in the company of guys like Roger Clemens, Pedro Martinez, and Greg Maddux, and definitely makes him worthy of the midseason Cy Young.

See A.L. choices: Cy Young leader - MVP leader

[Editor's note: This post is by John Trifone (@JohnnyT0122), who also contributes at our NFL site: Eat, Drink and Sleep Football (see John's archives).]