The second of my random thoughts for tonight, again with possible quotes from the Joe Morgan and Jerry Crasnick chats from today (see this entry for links to the chats):
AL Rookie of the Year:
There have been several candidates throughout the season, with Robinson Cano leading the way for a while and a couple A’s (Nick Swisher and Huston Street) close behind. Swisher’s stats fell off (his batting average is down to .234, and his OPS is at .765) and he kind of dropped out of the race. Cano also fell off a bit (.291 batting average, but only a .316 OBP and .767 OPS), although he did have three homers in two games last week. The leader now is Street, who has 21 saves, a 1.58 ERA, and a .190 batting average against. Yankee fans just can’t seem to let Cano drop, though, as evidenced by Joe from Oklahoma City, who has had the same question answered by three different chatting baseball experts in the past two days:
Joe (OKC): Do you think Robinson Cano’s recent hot stretch has gotten him back into the ROY debate, or is this thing already going to Oakland?
Joe Morgan: Cano is a candidate for sure but he will have to continue to play this well in the remaining games. I’m more for an everyday player winning these types of awards than pitchers, closers, etc. I’m prejudiced because I played every day.
I chose this quote for two reasons:
First, Joe Morgan is the only one of the three (Crasnick and Rob Neyer being the others) who didn’t shoot down the idea. Yes, Cano has had a much better September than expected, but that only underscores how mediocre he had been. Cano’s stats look like this:
So yeah, Cano has had a good September, but all it has done is gotten him back up to “slightly above average” overall. We will even upgrade that to “good for a rookie,” since we are discussing the Rookie of the Year award. But then you look at Street, who has been great by any standard, and has done it as one of the most pressure-filled positions in baseball: the closer on a contending team with a mediocre offense. Rather than go into Street’s stats, I will just link to them, and you can look for yourself.
My vote: Huston Street.
Oh yeah, the other reason I used that quote is because Joe Morgan referred to “awards like this.” What other award is there that is anything like the Rookie of the Year award? I assume he was referring to the MVP award as the other one “like this” that he favors position players over pitchers, but that is pretty silly. The Rookie of the Year award is for the best rookie in the league, and to imply that a pitcher can’t be as good at what he does as a position player can be at what does is silly at best, but more like ridiculous and ignorant.