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The AL MVP voters speak — including the guy who voted Trout seventh

Nov 15, 2013, 1:36 PM EDT

Mike Trout AP

Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com spoke with 17 of the 30 AL MVP voters and got their rationale for who they picked for the award.  It’s a great effort by Gonzalez to collect all of these opinions. It’s pretty illuminating too.

The most illuminating thing about it: how many of the voters cite team performance when it comes down to casting their MVP vote. This despite the fact that the MVP ballot itself states that “The MVP need not come from a division winner or other playoff qualifier.” Of course it also says “there is no clear-cut definition of what Most Valuable means,” so that’s the out.

And for the record, here’s Bill Ballou of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. He’s the guy who voted Mike Trout an astounding 7th:

I am a strict constructionist re: “valuable”. If the award were Player of the Year, Trout would get my vote. I’m of the school that in order to have “value” you have to help your team be good, at least to the point of contending. The Angels didn’t truly contend. To fully develop that logic, players from non-contenders should not be listed on the  ballot at all, but the BBWAA insists that we fill out all 10 slots, so I did, even though I did not think there were 10 worthy candidates from contending teams.

Again: no “clear cut definition” so if he wants to read “on a contending team” into the criteria, he can.  And he did. To a pretty extreme degree, I think everyone can agree.

  1. chc4 - Nov 15, 2013 at 4:20 PM

    Classic. As a “strict constructionist” he should be judging it exactly as it reads in the BBWA handbook… which says not to take into account a teams performance when voting for players. This guy isn’t very intelligent.

    • macjacmccoy - Nov 15, 2013 at 5:34 PM

      “The MVP need not come from a division winner or other playoff qualifier”

      If you’re reading it exactly like the handbook says then there’s nothing wrong with his reasoning. It says need not, all that means is if you choose to you can choose not to hold the team’s record against the candidate. It doesn’t say you can’t hold the team’s record against the candidate. Then it says there is no clear cut definition of what an MVP is. Which is true there isnt.

      You have snippets out of the “handbook” right in front of you and you still misquote and misunderstand it. So if anyone’s lacking intelligence its you.

  2. ddmcd1974 - Nov 15, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    Stop with the Davis was on a 4th place team. He may have been but it he was in the best diVision in baseball no doubt about it. how many other Divisions had that many over 500 teams. ZERO you clowns. Davis DeServes it more than anyone. down the stretch who did teams fear, Davis that’s who.

    • zzalapski - Nov 15, 2013 at 6:22 PM

      We’re talking about the same Chris Davis who hit .216/.304/.451 in September, right?

  3. mungman69 - Nov 15, 2013 at 6:36 PM

    That writer is just trying to be noticed, and he is noticed, among other things.

  4. cohnjusack - Nov 15, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    The fact is, Mike Trout just wasn’t a good enough pitcher to win the MVP.

  5. gloccamorra - Nov 15, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    Well, the same guys who vote for MVP vote on the Hall of Fame ballot. That tells you all you need to know.

  6. andreweac - Nov 16, 2013 at 12:50 PM

    BBWAA is short for Bad Bald White Archaic Antiques.

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