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Pittsburgh writer leaves Heyward off Rookie of the Year ballot, includes two Pirates

Nov 15, 2010, 2:59 PM EDT

Neil Walker, Jose Tabata

UPDATE: We now know who the voters who left Buster Posey and Jason Heyward off their Rookie of the Year ballots were: Yasushi Kikuchi of the Kyodo News (He’s a member of the L.A.-Anaheim BBWAA Chapter) was the only one to omit Posey. He had Gaby Sanchez first, Heyward second and Jaime Garcia third. The voter to omit Jason Heyward was Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He had Posey first, and two Pirates — Neil Walker and Jose Tabata — second and third.

I can almost see Kikuchi’s vote if you assume that he’s a total hardass about playing time.  Still ridiculous to leave Posey off because his production more than outweighed his lost time, but at least there’s a potential philosophical thread to hold onto there.  Dejan, though? Dude, that’s just nuts.  The Pittsburgh guy voting for two Pirates, neither of whom were considered top rookies by really anyone this year, is sketchy.  I hope Dejan writes a column explaining his votes, because absent any other explanation, it smells like rank homerism. I like and respect Kovacevic’s work, so I want there to be a better reason than that.

2:33 P.M.: Like I said, I don’t take issue with Buster Posey taking the NL Rookie of the Year Award. Strong season, definitely deserving, even if I would have gone with Heyward. They were excruciatingly close in my mind once you controlled for Heyward playing in more games, but I don’t for the life of me presume to know how to value Posey’s defensive contributions and they may have made up for it.  You’ll never hear me complain about Heyward not winning.

But I can complain about this: one writer left Buster Posey off his ballot entirely. One writer left Jason Heyward off.  That is simply unreasonable.

Check out the voting yourself:there are 32 voters. Each one gets to name three players on their ballot.  Both Posey and Heyward were named on only 31 ballots. I don’t care if you have Posey first or Heyward first, but how do you not have one of them either first, second or third?

Can this be explained by Gaby Sanchez’s two inexplicable first place votes?  Is there a Florida insurgency? Did Sanchez’s flying clothesline of Nyjer Morgan not only catapult him higher in the rankings than he deserves, but also knock out votes for Posey and Heyward?

Inquiring minds want to know . . .

  1. Jonny 5 - Nov 15, 2010 at 3:07 PM

    I think Posey should get it. IMO Jason H would have been beat soundly had Posey had all season to play. It was close still and Heyward has nothing to be ashamed of. The both of these two have much growing to do and will likely do great things and recieve more awards for their baseball achievements. I think hamstringing Buster for not making it all season was wrong. I also think anyone who left either of these guys off ballot should immediately be relieved of their duties. Immediately.

  2. thegoche - Nov 15, 2010 at 3:20 PM

    This guy was only going based on what he saw.

    I mean, Heyward only went 16 for 34 with 2 doubles, a triple and 2 homers, for .471/.561/.765 against the Pirates this year.

    I can only assume that rookies as a whole averaged OPSed 1400 against the Pirates, so you can see why he wasn’t impressed.

    • gonfalon - Nov 16, 2010 at 10:44 AM

      by that standard, then the accomplishments of Walker, Tabata, and even Pedro Alvarez are much more remarkable than Heyward, since the Pirates’ rookies didn’t have the advantage of facing one of the major league’s worst pitching staffs to pad their stats.

  3. cosfba - Nov 15, 2010 at 3:26 PM

    One “throw-away” vote spoils the entire integrity of the award.
    Just saying.

    • thegoche - Nov 15, 2010 at 3:40 PM

      I wouldn’t say that. These awards have very little integrity anyway.

      Mostly it just proves that that dude is an unrepentant homer. I mean, I, a Braves fan who would have voted for Heyward, have no problem with being a homer.

      (I am an FSU fan too though, so I’m happy for Posey anyway).

      But that guy deserves to be mocked a little for not just 1 but 2 otherwise indefensible homer votes.

  4. PanchoHerreraFanClub - Nov 15, 2010 at 3:43 PM

    This is hardly news remebering the Cy Young last year where one writer cost Carpenter the award by not including him on the ballot. You have slammed the managers and coaches for their choices in the Silver Slugger and Golden Glove awards. Now it is the writers turn. Personally, I see Heyward as a Frenchie wantabe. After all Frenchie had better numbers than Heyward as rookie and spent l much less time on DL.

    • hackerjay - Nov 15, 2010 at 4:19 PM

      The only difference is that it was pretty easy to come up with three pitchers better then Carpenter, who didn’t even pitch 200 innings.

      I almost wonder if the Pittsburgh writer just really though Posey should win, so he left Heyward off the ballot in case the second or third place vote would give Heyward the win.

    • nps6724 - Nov 15, 2010 at 4:19 PM

      “After all Frenchie had better numbers than Heyward as rookie and spent l much less time on DL.”

      You’re an idiot.

      • Utley's Hair - Nov 15, 2010 at 5:07 PM

        Well-constructed argument there.

      • nps6724 - Nov 15, 2010 at 5:13 PM

        Why would I need one? Anyone who thinks Heyward is a “Francoeur wannabe” or not as good as he was in 2005 doesn’t really deserve one.

      • tomemos - Nov 15, 2010 at 5:30 PM

        Yeah, he doesn’t need a well-constructed argument. Frenchy in 2005 played in only 70 games.

        If the author meant 2006 as his rookie season, then that would be the season in which Frenchy (in 162 games) walked 23 times, struck out 132 times, hit .260, and OBPed .293. So either way the comparison is beyond nonsensical.

      • Utley's Hair - Nov 15, 2010 at 5:54 PM

        Whether his comment makes any sense to you or anyone else, any personal attack like that requires points of argument. Otherwise, you just come off as a malcontent Bravos fan lashing out because your guy didn’t make it.

      • tomemos - Nov 15, 2010 at 7:34 PM

        Oh pish, you’re getting on him for personal attacks? What is this, a model UN? When someone makes an idiotic argument I think it’s valuable to call a spade a spade.

    • Kevin S. - Nov 15, 2010 at 6:22 PM

      Actually, had Keith Law not voted Vazquez second, moving Wainwright up to #2 and Carpenter to #3, Lincecum still would have won it. Try again.

    • nps6724 - Nov 15, 2010 at 6:24 PM

      I’ve already said multiple times Posey deserved to win. Not to mention the post in question makes zero mention of Posey; it is a comparison between Heyward and Francoeur. So if you thought Heyward not winning was the reason, you were the one projecting that.

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