Sunday, October 16, 2011

BBA Boston Chapter Walter Johnson Award

Later this week, the Baseball Bloggers Alliance will announce the winners of the 2011 Walter Johnson Award given to the best pitcher.  There are some interesting debates going on for the National League candidates, but if the Boston Chapter of the BBA is representative of the rest of the American League voting, there should be no suspense as to who the AL winner will be.   In an unanimous vote, all Boston voting members selected Justin Verlander as the clear winner.   And for very good reasons, as I elaborated when I made by ballot public.  On Thursday the BBA will likely confirm Verlander as the AL award recipient and I look forward to seeing how the membership voted in what should be a much tighter NL race.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

BBA Boston Chapter Goose Gossage Award

Now that the BBA has named their Connie Mack and Willie Mays award winners (for manager and rookie of the year), the next announcement will be for the Goose Gossage Award for top reliever.   I had made my picks earlier, giving a rival Yankee the top spot on my ballot.  And it wasn't even for Mr. Enter Sandman himself, but to David Robetson.  Surely not many others would pick a middle reliever, and I certainly never thought that fellow Red Sox bloggers would be so willing to give top honour to a Yankee. So imagine my surprise, when not only did the Boston Chapter also place Robertston #1 on our collective ballot, but matched my picks perfectly giving 2nd spot to Jonathan Papelbon  and the aforementioned Mariano Rivera as the #3 pick.   The BBA will make their announcement for both the AL and NL winners early next week.

Baseball Bloggers Alliance Awards Tracker

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance was formed in the fall of 2009 to encourage cooperation and collaboration between baseball bloggers of all major league teams as well as those that follow baseball more generally. As of this writing, the organization consists of 316 blogs (including yours truly) spanning all 30 major league squads as well as general baseball writing.

The BBA is organized under a similar structure as the Baseball Writers of America, where blogs that follow the same team are combined into “chapters” and only two votes from the chapter on an award are counted.    As a member of the Boston chapter, I am privileged to vote for all the American League awards, and our Chapter president tallies up the votes and submits our combined ballot.

The official website of the BBA is located at baseballbloggersalliance.wordpress.com. The BBA can be found on Twitter by the handle @baseballblogs and by the hashmark #bbba.

This post will have a link to all the awards, showing RSN-Alberta’s ballot, the Boston chapter’s combined ballot, and the BBA award recipient.  I will continuously update this as new winners are announced, so bookmark this page. EDIT: All awards updated now.

Click on the links on the individual awards for the reasoning behind these selections, and to leave any comments.

Connie Mack Award  - Manager of the Year
My ballot
1. Joe Girardi
2. Joe Maddon
3. Ron Washington
Boston Chapter
1. Maddon
2. Jim Leyland
3. Washington
BBA Award Recipient
AL -  Maddon
NL - Kirk Gibson

Willie Mays Award – Rookie of the Year
My ballot
1. Michael Pineda
2. Dustin Ackley
3. Brett Lawrire
Boston Chapter
1. Eric Hosmer
2. Jeremy Hellickson
3. Desmond Jennings
BBA Award Recipients
AL- Hosmer / Hellickson (tie)
NL - Craig Kimbrel


Goose Gossage Award – Reliever of the Year
My ballot
1. David Robertson
2. Jonathan Papelbon
3. Mariano Rivera
Boston Chapter
1. Robertson
2. Papelbon
3. Rivera
BBA Award Recipients
AL - Valverde
NL - Kimbrel

Walter Johnson Award – Pitcher of the Year
My ballot
1. Justin Verlander
2. Jered Weaver
3. CC Sabathia
4. Doug Fister
5. CJ Wilson
Boston Chapter
1. Verlander
2. Sabathia
3. Weaver
4. Dan Haren
5. James Shield
BBA Award Recipients
AL - Justin Verlander
NL - Clayton Kershaw

Stan Musial Award – Player of the Year
1. Jose Bautista
2. Justin Verlander
3. Jacoby Ellsbury
4. Dustin Pedroia
5. Miguel Cabrera
6. Alex Gordon
7. Ian Kinsler
8. Evan Longoria
9. Curtis Granderson
10. Jered Weaver
1. Ellsbury
2. Bautista
3. Cabrera
4. Verlander
5. Pedroia
6. Longoria
7. Granderson
8. Robinson Cano
9.(T) Gordon
9.(T) Kinsler
BBA Award Recipients
AL - Jose Bautista
NL - Matt Kemp

Oh yea... Congratulations to the St. Louis Cardinals on culminating a very exciting post-season with their Championship!

St Louis Cardinals 2011 World Series Champion Fans

Monday, October 10, 2011

BBA Boston Chapter Willie Mays Award

Yesterday I shared the Boston Chapter and BBA's selections for the Connie Mack Award,  and today we will continue the post-season awards with a look at who were the top rookies named.  As a reminder, I picked Seattle's Michael Pineda over teammate Dustin Ackley and the Jays' Brett Lawrie on my Willie Mays award ballot.  I made my case for these players and also explained why I left other favourites such as Eric Hosmer and Jeremy Hellickson off my ballot. Alas, the other members of the Boston Chapter voted differently, giving the award to Hosmer.  Hellickson was second and Desmond Jennings got the 3rd place vote on the Chapter's ballot.  Take a look here for the details of the voting.  This ballot will count towards the BBA's official award, which will be named in the next few days.  I will update this with the final results once they are announced.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

BBA Boston Chapter Connie Mack Award

Now that I have posted my personal ballots for all the Baseball Bloggers Alliance (BBA) awards, time to share the final results.

I am a member of the Boston Chapter of the BBA.  Each Chapter gets two votes, and as Boston is an American League team, we only voted on the AL awards.  Each member of the chapter votes for any and all of the awards, with each vote getter being assigned a number value, based on where they are in the voting, and whoever gets the most votes, gets the Chapter's nod for that award.

The first award of 2011 is the Connie Mack Award, given to the Best Manager in the American League.
Here are the Boston Chapter’s Top 3 Selections:
  • Joe Maddon, Tampa Bay Rays - 20 points
  • Jim Leyland, Detroit Tigers - 6 points
  • Ron Washington, Texas Rangers - 5 points
The results were a little different than what I had picked, and in fact I was only the only member to give a vote to Joe Girardi (would you expect differently from a bunch of Red Sox fans?), but I can't argue with the selection of Maddon who I had in 2nd place.

Overall, the BBA's selections matched those of the Boston Chapter, with Maddon winning handily with 22 of 25 1st place votes.  In the NL, Kirk Gibson won unanimously with Ron Roenicke of the Brewers coming in 2nd  and Tony LaRussa edging out Charlie Manuel for 3rd place.  You can view the entire BBA results here.

2011 AL Stan Musial Award

Time for my ballot for the last award that I have the privilege to vote on as part of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance (BBA) (@BaseballBlogs). I have already selected the Manager of the Year (Connie Mack Award),Top Rookie (Willie Mays),Top Pitcher (Walter Johnson) and Best Reliever (Goose Gossage).  My votes go towards the Boston Chapter of the BBA, who get 2 votes in total for each of the American League awards.  The only award left for me to vote on is the Stan Musial award given to the Player of the Year.   This was a tough choice.  Unlike in previous years where there is an obvious choice, or it's a 2 player horse race, this season there were many deserving candidates, each of whom I could vote for at #1 and not get ridiculed.   Did I select hometown favourite Jacoby Ellsbury?  Tiger ace Justin Verlander?  Did I do the unthinkable and pick Curtis Granderson, who would be my 3rd Yankee award winner?  The RSN Alberta vote for the 2011 Stan Musial Award goes to...

Sunday, October 2, 2011

2011 AL Goose Gossage Award

As part of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance I get to vote for the major awards.  I have already posted my AL winners for the Connie Mack (manager), Walter Johnson (pitcher) and Willie Mays (rookie) awards.  Today I tackle the Goose Gossage award handed out to the top reliever.   This was a tough one.  What to look at?  Saves? ERA? WAR?    Ultimately I used a combination of numbers and non statistical measures of what they meant to their team.

The winner of the 2011 AL Goose Gossage award goes to....

Saturday, October 1, 2011

2011 AL Willie Mays Award

As part of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance, I have already voted for the 2011 AL Connie Mack Award for top manager, and Walter Johnson Award for top pitcher.  Now, in what might be the toughest and closest race, is my ballot for the Willie Mays award for top rookie.   It was an excellent rookie crop.  Among pitchers we had Ivan Nova, Michael Pineda , Jeremy Hellickson, Alexi Ogando and Zach Britton who all had great inaugural seasons.  On the offensive side of the field we had Eric Hosmer, Dustin Ackley, Mark Trumbo, JP Arencibia, Brett Lawrie, Desmond Jennings and Jemile Weeks among others to consider.

So, who gets my vote for the 2011 AL Willie Mays Award?

2011 AL Walter Johnson Award

In what should come as no surprise to any baseball fan, my pick for the AL Walter Johnson award, for best pitcher in the American League, goes to Justin Verlander.
First the raw stats: 24-5, 2.40 ERA, 250 Ks.   This while leading the league in innings pitched with 251 and a WHIP of 0.92.  League leaders are usually above 1, and this is the 2nd lowest mark in the AL since 1972 (to Pedro's record setting mark in 2000).  But aside from the stats, he is the major reason the Tigers ran away with their division.  Take him away from the rotation and this is maybe an 85 win team.  If I had an MVP pick, I suspect he'd be the first name on the ballot as well.  
 The rest of the ballot...