By now you’ve all heard and read about this silly little debate pitting the Yankee beatwriters against the rest of the free world, something that originally started out as a disagreement over UZR but has since evolved into a full blown MVP debate. Anybody who’s anybody has chimed in, including Rob Neyer, Joe Posnanski, and about a million others. Since we’re always fashionably late to these kinds of things, it’s time for us to chime in. Actually, no. It’s time for you guys to chime in.
We’re going to limit this little debate to Joe Mauer and Mark Teixeira since they’re the two most mentioned names, but don’t be mistaken, there are certainly plenty of other legit MVP candidates out there. Let’s look at some of the facts…
Pros: tied for fourth in the league with a .941 OPS … second in the league with 30 homers … third in the league with 86 RBI … late inning heroics (13 homers in innings 7+) … outstanding defense at first … arguably the best player on the best team in the league
Cons: hit just .191-.328-.418 through the team’s first 32 games … significant home-road split (1.031 OPS at home, .853 on the road) … just fifth among first baseman with a 3.9 WAR
Pros: leads the AL in AVG (.380), OBP (.446), SLG (.637) and OPS (1.083) … hitting .403-.490-.727 with RISP … outstanding defense behind the dish … tie with Albert Pujols for the league league in WAR (6.2)
Cons: missed his team’s first 23 games due to injury … plays for a team 6.5 games out of a playoff spot
That’s obviously just some of the data, but enough to get a conversation started. Whether you’re an old school batting average and RBI guy or a new schooler who digs positional value and stuff like that, this isn’t such a cut and dry debate. So … who ya got?
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Here’s your open thread for the night. The Mets and Braves are playing, but there doesn’t appear to be any games on the national networks. I hate west coast games. Anything goes here, just be nice.