Was a half season of CC Sabathia's dominance and heroics enough to carry him to this year's award? And was less than half a season plenty for that savant turned savior, Manny Ramirez?
Short Answer: Hell no, no way in hell, not even fucking close, no. Hell no.
My answer is an enthusiastic yes to both questions.
Both candidates are deserving. I don't care that they were late arrivers to the National League this season. Sabathia (11-2, 1.65 ERA in 17 starts for Milwaukee) and Ramirez (.396, 17 homers, 53 RBIs in 53 games with L.A.) easily made the biggest impacts.
False. The guy who made the biggest impact was the guy that played at a higher level than anyone in baseball--and for an ENTIRE season. That man is Albert Pujols. Let's see where Heyman placed Albert Pujols on his "theoretical ballot" (Pujols, just to clarify again, is by far the best choice for MVP. I mean, just by GLANCING at the stats you can tell that it so painstakingly obvious that he provided more valuable production than anyone else in baseball. It's like talking about this year's NBA MVP, you may want to make up some intangible reasons as to why other players have been more valuable, but when it comes down to it, it's not even really worthy of debate because the evidence is just so overwhelmingly in Lebron's favor).
1. Manny Ramirez, Dodgers. The savant saved the storied franchise, slugging .743 and lifting the Dodger dogs to the NL West title.
2. CC Sabathia, Brewers. Carried them with three straight outings on three days' rest, and oh yes, had a league-leading seven complete games.
3. Ryan Howard, Phillies. Huge September (.352, 11 HRs) probably will get him the award.
4. Brad Lidge, Phillies. Second perfect season for a closer ever. That's 41 for 41 in a park that was supposed to be tough on him.
5. Albert Pujols, Cardinals. Kept the Cardinals in the hunt with .357 average despite a banged-up elbow.
6. Ryan Braun, Brewers. Two big bombs in final week aids his cause.
7. Johan Santana, Mets. Worth every penny after a perfect second half (8-0, 2.17 ERA).
8. Carlos Delgado, Mets. Great power run put Mets in playoff position before they blew it again.
9. Chase Utley, Phillies. Huge start still counts.
10. Lance Berkman, Astros. Houston was just a little too late to the party.
Now, just for fun, let's look at Heyman's ballot with each player's WARP1 attached:
1. Manny Ramirez- 5.3
2. C.C. Sabathia- 6.6
3. Ryan Howard- 5.0
4. Brad Lidge- 6.3
5. Albert Pujols- 13.0
6. Ryan Braun- 8.2
7. Johan Santana- 8.6
8. Carlos Delgado- 7.8
9. Chase Utley- 10.4
10. Lance Berkman- 10.9
So basically, the only players on his ballot that are really worthy of finishing in the top ten are Pujols, Santana (arguably), Utley, and Berkman, all of whom don't even come close to winning in Heyman's ancient, intangible-focused, "stats-don't-mean-jack-shit" excuse for a brain. Plus, I'm pretty sure Ramirez only played in about 16 games. They were an awesome 16 games mind you, but Pujols did basically the same thing over a 270 game span. I don't have the schedules in front of me right now, but I'm fairly certain those numbers are accurate.
I wonder what his AL MVP ballot will look like.
1. Francisco Rodriguez, Angels. An alltime great season with a record 62 saves.
2. Carlos Quentin, White Sox. Broke his hand in a fit of anger, costing him the top spot here.
3. Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox. The "jockey'' may actually win it with a scrappy attitude and solid stats (118 runs, 54 doubles).
4. Justin Morneau, Twins. Without him and his 129 RBIs, what does that lineup look like?
5. Kevin Youkilis, Red Sox. The Red Sox campaign is for Pedroia, but this guy is just as pesky (.569 slugging, 115 RBIs).
6. Joe Nathan, Twins. Another great, underappreciated Twins star.
7. Joe Mauer, Twins. Great two-way catcher who won another batting title (.330) and is easily the best in his business.
8. Jermaine Dye, White Sox. Unnoticed star had a nice season.
9. Josh Hamilton, Rangers. As talented as anyone playing, including A-Rod, and 130 RBIs doesn't hurt his cause.
10. Evan Longoria, Rays. Even better, they already locked him up for six years.
Francisco Rodriguez... because he saved 62 goddamn games. Here's a few facts about K-Rod's "record season" that Heyman is apparently choosing to ignore:
-He had 69 save opportunities, which was 18 more than the next closer, Jose Valverde.
-If he had blown 14 saves, for a success rate of 65%, he still would've had the most saves in baseball with 45.
-He pitched a total of 68.3 Innings. That's right he actually had more save opportunities than he had innings pitched.
-Twelve of his saves were completed when the team was leading by three or more runs.
-There were eight saves in which he had to record less than three outs--five of them being those ultra-crucial "one out saves."
Rodriguez was the main benefactor of an Angels team that was unbelievable lucky. So lucky, in fact, that they were somehow able to outperform their pythagorean record by 12 wins! Also, I don't know how the guys like Heyman who love to say "where would the Angels be without K-Rod" justify the fact that the Angels won the division by twenty-one games. I don't think team record should factor into it, but what other kind of reasons can you use to explain such a ridiculous pick?
Alright. Moving on.
NL Cy Young
1. Santana. Gets edge over CC for ERA title and for being in the NL all year.
2. Sabathia. Sheer second-half dominance.
3. Lidge. Though tough to leave out Webb and especially Lincecum (18-5, with a league-leading 265 strikeouts) in this year with at least five deserving candidates.
I can deal with Lidge and Santana. Choosing Sabathia and completely leaving Lincecum out of the top three is borderline insane. Whatever. I'll let it pass. Next!
AL Cy Young
1. Cliff Lee, Indians. Once-in-a-decade type season for this reclamation project (22-3, 2.54 ERA).
2. Roy Halladay, Blue Jays. The one pitcher in the league who can complete what he starts (nine complete games).
3. Francisco Rodriguez. Now holds the alltime saves record.
Ah yes, what a perfect way to end the critiquing of this already discredited fake ballot. Mr. Heyman, you are officially the dumbest make-believe voter on the planet (the dumbest PERSON on the planet is whoever decided to cast Cherry Jones as the boring, unconvincing woman president of 24). Francisco Rodriguez, whom Heyman claims to have had a more valuable season than anyone else in the American League, is somehow not a more valuable pitcher than either Cliff Lee nor Roy Halladay. Don't get me wrong, those are good choices for 1-2, but if you're going to be a lunatic and pick K-Rod as your AL MVP, at least have the intelligence to select him as your Cy Young as well. In no instance does it make sense to pick a pitcher for the MVP and not pick him for the Cy Young. If you are the most valuable, then you are the best. If you are the best, you are the best. Cy Young = Best. Best = Cy Young. Cy Best = Young. Best Young = Cy.
I don't think I can make it any clearer.
I have a feeling that Jon Heyman will eventually cause me to hate a network that broadcasts nothing but baseball 24/7, something which God intended to be beautiful, sacred and pure in its existence. Damn you Heyman. Damn you.