Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Abreu Unanimous Selection for Willie Mays Award

Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu was a unanimous selection for the Baseball Bloggers Alliance’s Willie Mays Award for top rookie in the American League.  All fifteen ballots cast believed Abreu, a free agent signee from Cuba, was the top new player on the junior circuit.
Abreu clubbed 36 home runs and drove in 107 while putting up a .317/.383/.964 line and an OPS+ of 169.  Those stellar offensive numbers helped him outpace his runner-up, New York Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka, by 53.5 points.
The National League voting was not quite as clear-cut, though it still was a landslide for the winner.  New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom snagged ten of the thirteen first-place votes available to beat out Cincinnati Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton by 28 points.  deGrom tallied nine wins, a 2.69 ERA and an ERA+ of 130 before being shut down at the end of the season.
The complete voting results are as follows (first place votes in parenthesis):
American League
Jose Abreu, Chicago (15) 75
Masahiro Tanaka, New York 21.5
Collin McHugh, Houston 10.5
Dellin Betances, New York 6
Mookie Betts, Boston 6
Danny Santana, Minnesota 6
Matt Shoemaker, Los Angeles 3
Kevin Kiermaier, Tampa Bay 3
Brock Holt, Boston 2
Yordano Ventura, Kansas City 2
National League
Jacob deGrom, New York (10) 54
Billy Hamilton, Cincinnati (2) 26
Ender Inciarte, Arizona (1) 9
David Peralta, Arizona 9
Ken Giles, Philadelphia 6
Joe Panik, San Francisco 2
Jeurys Familia, New York 1
Yangervis Solarte, San Diego 1
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 215 blogs spanning most of the 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. The blog chapters that are focused on general baseball were allowed two votes as well, which they could use both on the same league or split between the two leagues.
Chapters generally followed one of two methods when casting their ballot.  Either representatives of the chapter were given the ballots for voting or a “group ballot” was posted, accounting for both of their votes.
Notably, though the Alliance’s awards come out well before their official counterparts, the BBA selections have matched those of the Baseball Writers of America a large portion of the time.  This, of course, does not include the Goose Gossage Award that is exclusive to the BBA.
Ballots are posted on the respective blogs and for this award, were tabulated on a 5-3-1 point scale for first through third place. In the interest of transparency, links to individual ballots are listed below.
Prior Winners:
2013: Wil Myers, Tampa Bay; Jose Fernandez, Miami
2012: Mike Trout, Los Angeles of Anaheim; Bryce Harper, Washington
2011: Eric Hosmer, Kansas City and Jeremy Hellickson, Tampa Bay; Craig Kimbrel, Atlanta
2010: Neftali Feliz, Texas; Buster Posey, San Francisco
2009: Andrew Bailey, Oakland; Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh
Voters:
National League

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