Earlier tonight MLB and the BBWAA announced finalists for 2018’s major awards. That is the Rookie of the Year, Manager of the Year, Cy Young, and Most Valuable Player. The league has been announcing three finalists for each award in each league for a few years now. They’re trying to drum up interest.
As expected, both Miguel Andujar and Gleyber Torres are among the AL Rookie of the Year finalists. They’re up against Angels righty-slash-slugger Shohei Ohtani. Here are all the award finalists. The Yankees did not have any other finalists, which isn’t surprising. Having two Rookie of the Year finalists is pretty cool though.
Andujar and Gleyber both started the season in Triple-A before quickly taking over as cornerstone infielders. Andujar hit .297/.328/.527 (128 wRC+) with 27 homers and an AL rookie record 47 doubles. Torres hit .271/.340/.480 (120 wRC+) with 24 homers. Here are the AL rookie WAR leaderboards:
Baseball Reference WAR
1. Joey Wendle: +4.3
2. Shohei Ohtani: +3.9
3. Brad Keller: +3.5
4. Gleyber Torres: +2.9
5. Jaime Barria: +2.6
6. Miguel Andujar: +2.2
1. Shohei Ohtani: +3.8
2. Joey Wendle: +3.7
3. Miguel Andujar: +2.7
4. Brad Keller: +2.5
5. Ramon Laureano: +2.1
6. Jose Alvarado: +2.0
t-7. Gleyber Torres: +1.9
I am pretty sure Ohtani is going to win Rookie of the Year, folks. The guy hit .285/.361/.564 (152 wRC+) with 22 homers and threw 51.2 innings with a 3.31 ERA (3.57 FIP) and 29.9% strikeouts. That is straight up bonkers. And Ohtani did that while adjusting to a new league and a new country. He was incredible. I’d vote for him. Sorry, but it’s true.
The last team with the first and second place finishers in the Rookie of the Year voting was the 2011 Braves with Craig Kimbrel and Freddie Freeman. The last AL team to do it was the 1984 Mariners with Alvin Davis and Mark Langston. The Yankees are guaranteed to have a top two finisher in the Rookie of the Year voting for the third straight season. Gary Sanchez was the runner-up in 2016 and Aaron Judge won the award last year.
As for the other awards, it’s no surprise the Yankees did not have any finalists. Judge’s wrist injury took him out of the MVP race and Luis Severino’s second half fade took him out of the Cy Young race. Aaron Boone never had much of a chance in the Manager of the Year voting. Not with some of the other things that happened around the league.
Next week is awards week. Manager of the Year will be announced on Monday, Rookie of the Year on Tuesday, Cy Young on Wednesday, and MVP on Thursday. They’ll all be revealed during a live MLB Network broadcast at 6pm ET.