Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Card #'s 29 or #211 Now Officially Belong to...Part 2
In recent years, Topps has reserved six cards within Series 1 for the AL and NL award winners that are being announced this week. Card #'s 29 and #211 (according to the preliminary checklist) are reserved for the Most Valuable Players.
On Monday, Joey Votto was named the NL Most Valuable Player. Yesterday, we learned who won the award in the American League, and thus gets to appear on either card #29 or #211 (Topps did not specify which card goes to which league's winner).
Congratulations to Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers for being named the American League's Most Valuable Player. This caps what has become a very inspirational comeback for one of baseball's best players. We all know the story (top prospect, the drug abuse, being out of baseball for a number of years, finding divine intervention, getting back into baseball, and finally making it to the majors). When all was lost, he found redemption. And all that hard work has paid off because thanks to him (and a little help from his friends), the Texas Rangers made it to the World Series for the first time in franchise history. He led the AL in batting average, hitting a good .359 average to go with 95 runs scored, 32 home runs and 100 RBIs. He also led the league with a .633 slugging percentage and was second with a .411 on-base percentage.
So card #29 or #211 will be of Hamilton, the first Ranger to win the MVP award since 2003 when Alex Rodriguez (notice the irony here...when ARod came to Texas, he was supposed to help get the Rangers into the World Series. And in a turnabout kind of way-striking out against Neftali Feliz as the last out of the series-he did). He received 22 of 28 first-place votes for a total of 358 points, beating a field that included Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers (262, 5 first-place votes), Robinson Cano (229), Jose Bautista of the Blue Jays (165, 1 first-place vote), Paul Konerko of the White Sox (130), Evan Longoria of the Rays (100), Rays teammate Carl Crawford (98), Joe Mauer of the Twins (97), Adrian Beltre of the Red Sox (83), Delmon Young of the Twins (44), Vladimir Guerrero of the Rangers (22), Rafael Soriano of the Rays (21), CC Sabathia of the Yankees (13), Shin-Soo Choo of the Indians (9), Alex Rodriguez of the Yankees (8), AL Cy Young winner Felix Hernandez of the Mariners (6), M's teammate Ichiro Suzuki (3), Jim Thome of the Twins (2), Joakim Soria of the Royals and Mark Teixeira of the Yankees (1 each).
Hamilton also becomes the fifth Rangers player to win the MVP award, joining Jeff Burroughs, Juan Gonzalez (twice), Ivan Rodriguez, and Alex Rodriguez.
Let the debates continue. Did your guy win???