The 1st half of the MLB season is over so here are who I think should win the biggest awards midway through the season:
AL Comeback player of the year – Prince Fielder – 1st basemen – Texas Rangers – 2015 Stats: .339 average, 14 home runs
Analysis: The Rangers were a mess last season without star 1st basemen Prince Fielder, but Fielder has really returned back to form so far this season. The power numbers aren’t quite what we’re accustomed to seeing from Fielder, but he is just as effective hitting for average. Texas is actually still not out of contention at the all-star break with a 42-46 record mostly because Fielder has carried the Rangers offense. If he continues this type of play then he will definitely win this award at the end of the season.
NL Comeback player of the year – Matt Harvey – Starting Pitcher – New York Mets – 2015 Stats: 8-6, 3.07 ERA
Analysis: It isn’t easy coming back from Tommy John surgery, but Harvey looks like he was just prior to the surgery. Harvey is one of the best pitchers in the game and he made the Mets rotation from good to elite. Harvey has New York in contention and it is remarkable that he has been able to return to all-star form this soon.
AL Rookie of the year – Devon Travis – 2nd basemen – Toronto Blue Jays – 2015 Stats: .304 average, 7 home runs
Analysis: It is hard to find quality 2nd basemen these days, but it appears that the Blue Jays found a gem with rookie Devon Travis. He has just added some more offense to the most dynamic run-scoring team in the MLB and I’m thinking that he could still get even better. Normally, it takes awhile to develop solid offensive production, but Travis is proving that he can hit at the top of an MLB order already.
NL Rookie of the year – Kris Bryant – 3rd basemen – Chicago Cubs – 2015 Stats: .269 average, 12 home runs, 51 RBI’s
Analysis: I honestly thought that when Bryant came up from the minor leagues that all he would do is jack home runs and strikeout a lot. However, he has shown me a more well-rounded player than what I expected to see this year. I would like to see his average go up a little bit, but he has proven that he can hit in the middle of a lineup at the major league level. This guy will only get better and his power will only improve because I think 12 home runs is low for him. Overall, this guy has made the Cubs a good team and even though he still has some inconsistencies he will only show improvements going forward.
AL Manager of the year – A.J. Hinch – Houston Astros
Analysis: We didn’t expect to see much out of the Astros in 2015 seeing as they came off several miserable rebuilding seasons. Now, it appears the abundance of young players that Houston has developed are ready to be stars at the MLB level. It is remarkable that the Astros are only 1/2 a game back of the Angels for 1st place in the AL West and Hinch has done a tremendous job this year with a lot of young talent.
NL Manager of the year – Mike Matheny – St. Louis Cardinals
Analysis: Matheny just finds ways to keep the Cardinals as legitimate world series contenders each year and he might be overlooked as manager of the year for that. However, anytime a manager can lead a team to a 56-33 record before the all-star break then that is quite the accomplishment. The Cardinals have had their share of injuries this season and yet they still find ways to win games consistently.
AL Cy Young – Dallas Keuchel – Starting Pitcher – Houston Astros – 2015 Stats: 11-4, 2.23 ERA
Analysis: In case you are wondering this is not a joke because Keuchel has really come on over the past 2 seasons as one of the best pitchers in game despite being basically awful to start his career. Keuchel has been the obvious ace in a Astros rotation that otherwise isn’t that good. Keuchel gives the Astros a chance to win everytime he goes out there as he has a 2.23 ERA right now. He isn’t the most well-known name, but if he keeps pitching like he is then he has a very good chance of winning the Cy Young award.
NL Cy Young – Zack Greinke – Starting Pitcher – Los Angeles Dodgers – 2015 Stats: 8-2, 1.39 ERA
Analysis: Surprisingly, it is Zack Greinke who has been the number 1 pitcher in the Dodgers rotation. Clayton Kershaw normally would get that honor, yet it is shocking that Greinke has even lost 2 games this year because of how great he has pitched. Greinke is a major reason that the Dodgers are in 1st place in the NL west heading into the all-star break and hopefully he can continue his consistent pitching in the 2nd half.
AL MVP – Mike Trout – Center Fielder – Los Angeles Angels – 2015 Stats: .312 average, 26 home runs, 55 RBI’s
Analysis: Trout does basically everything for the Angels as he is a terrific player offensively and defensively. There is a reason that the Angels have surged into 1st place in the AL West. The team will only go as far as Mike Trout takes them and there can be argument that nobody means more to their team than Trout does to the Angels. He is one of the best power hitters in the game and he is just one of the best hitters in the game today.
NL MVP – Bryce Harper – Center Fielder – Washington Nationals – 2015 Stats: .339 average, 26 home runs, 61 RBI’s
Analysis: Harper is unstoppable so far this season and he has easily been the best player in the MLB in 2015 as he is starting to hit the ball everywhere on the field more consistently. Harper has the power to take anyone deep at any moment and with the rest of the team not picking up the slack as much he has carried the Nationals to 1st place in the NL East. It is great to see Harper becoming the MVP-caliber player that we thought he would be when he was drafted. Harper is the one player that I wouldn’t want to face as a pitcher right now and the scary thing is that he will be doing this for many years to come since he’s only 22 years old.