Baseball's award season is upon us and we finally have a vote that counts for something this year. We're proud members of the Baseball Blogger Alliance and they've been kind enough to give us ballots. The only thing the BBWAA ever gave us was Jimmy Rollins as the 2007 NL MVP. It's not like Albert Pujols was worth 2 more wins and had a .429 OBP or anything. Today we'll be unveiling our NL Stan Musial ballot for player of the year. Note: I completely ignored RBI.
1. Joey Votto
Votto and Albert Pujols put up almost identical stats. Votto had the slightest of edges in WAR (wins above replacement) with a 7.4 to Pujols' 7.3, on base percentage with .424 to .414, slugging percentage with .600 to .596 and even UZR (ultimate zone rating) with 1.6 to 1.5. Pujols ended the season with five more home runs, 42 to 37. The two were almost interchangeable first basemen in the National League. Votto had 19 more points of wOBA (weighted on base average) than Pujols which cancels out my other tie-breaker. The other tie-breaker, you ask? Votto is only worth 8 Scrablle points compared to the 14 for Pujols. I'm a scientist.
2. Albert Pujols
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3. Ryan Zimmerman
Zimmerman continues to fly under the radar in Washington because of hot prospects like Sthephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper but he's been the face of the franchise for years. He hit 25 home runs and .307/.388/.510 as the best defensive third baseman in baseball (13.9 UZR) and is still just 26-years-old. His 7.2 WAR was just a shade behind that of Votto and Pujols but, unfortunately, he's destined to finish in MVP voting like Teddy Roosevelt does in the Presidents race. Okay, better than Teddy but still...
4. Roy Halladay
My NL pitcher of the year. And to be honest, I'm not entirely sure he isn't the NL MVP.
5. Troy Tulowitzki
Tulo was a beast down the stretch hitting 15 homers and .303/.366/.754 in September. He finished the regular season with a .315/.381/.568 line and a 6.4 WAR. The Rox let me down in the playoff race but I can't hate on Buster Posey. Also cool about the Colorado Rockies, they serve Denver omelets throughout the stadium at kiosks.
6. Matt Holliday
Holliday was a great Robin to Pujols' Batman for the Cardinals hitting .312/.390/.532 for a 6.9 WAR.
7. Adam Wainwright
My second best NL pitcher of the year.
8. Carlos Gonzalez
Cargo had a little variation in his home stats (.380/.425/.737) compared to his line away from Coors Field (.289/.322/.453). Woof. Sure the splits are ugly but he still finished with 34 home runs and a .336/.376/.598 line. That's roughly what I put up last week in my backyard Wiffle Ball league.
9. Ubaldo Jimenez
My third place NL pitcher of the year.
10. Brian McCann
There are plenty of good candidates for the final place on this ballot. While McCann's 5.3 WAR and .269/.375/.453 line weren't tops in the league, he plays a premium position and was the offensive force on his team aside from 20-year-old rookie Jason Heyward. Who says I never give Atlanta any love? Put your hands down, all of my Atlanta based friends.