Thursday, November 15, 2012

It's Called "Valuable" For A Reason

Hey everybody! Miguel Cabrera won the MVP!

For all of the hype and hoopla over whether Mike Trout was going to unseat Cabrera due to his dynamic June, July, and August, the end result was a little...lacking.

22 first place votes to just 6? Is this the battle of the old fogey sportswriters against the Internet stat masters? If this vote had been 10 years in the future, would we be talking about the result being far different?

Well, it doesn't matter. Cabrera won.

Whenever an MVP debate surfaces, I always ask myself, "It's called the Most Valuable Player." What exactly does that mean? Well, it means that the player has the ability to lift his manager, teammates, and city up to the caliber that is expected of them. That can be through offense, defense, and being the leader in the clubhouse.

When it comes to stats, each side will find the numbers to support their man. Yes, Cabrera won the Triple Crown. Yes, Trout won the battle for Wins Above Replacement. But what matters most to me is that in the long run, the Tigers were able to conquer the teams in their division and win the crown, while the Angels - even with the likes of Trout - couldn't beat two other teams in their division, and Trout's numbers declined when September hit - the most crucial part of the season.

To be completely honest - and I don't like doing this often - but I'm inclined to state that Trout will fade into the shadows come next season. Eventually, we may even laugh at this debate between a potential Hall of Famer and a "one-hit wonder." There are lots of players in Major League Baseball who can be solid hitters and fielders for a few months at a time - but only the most solid players can step up and make a long-lasting impact.