2012 American League MVP Predictions
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In a few weeks, the Baseball Writers Association of America will vote on the American League and National League Most Valuable Player award winners. Every year, the end-of-season awards seem to give us some surprises. This year, however, the choice for the American League Most Valuable Player seems obvious. But as in every election, one can never tell how the voters will decide.
Let's take a look at the top five projected MVP candidates in order of finish.
All stats and references are from www.baseball-reference.com, www.mlb.com and www.wikipedia.org.
5th Place: Edwin Encarnacion
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Edwin Encarnacion, at age 29, had his best season to date. The third baseman-turned-designated hitter actually put up monster numbers compared to past seasons. He posted career highs in home runs, runs batted in, stolen bases and on base percentage. To thank Encarnacion for his excellent season, the Blue Jays gave him a 3-year, $27 million contract extension.
|.280||42 (4th) ||110 (3rd) ||13||93||.384 (5th)
4th Place: Josh Hamilton
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Josh Hamilton was clearly the MVP during the first half of the season. He went on a tear, hitting four home runs in one game, and was on pace to hit over 60 home runs in the season.
However, the second half of the season was another story. Hamilton went on a major slump and his numbers spiraled downwards. But due to his strong start, Hamilton was good enough to make 4th place on this list. As a free agent this off-season, Hamilton will have numerous teams vying for his services, if they can pay the hefty price tag.
|.285 ||43 (2nd) ||128 (2nd) ||7 ||103 (5th) ||.354|
3rd Place: Adrian Beltre
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Adrian Beltre has been a consistent threat in the American League since 2005. It seems that Beltre, who made his MLB debut in 1998 at the age of 19, gets so much better with age. With hitters such as Beltre and Josh Hamilton, its no wonder that the Rangers won two consecutive AL pennants.
|.321 (3rd) ||36 (6th) ||102 (9th) ||1||95 (10th)||.359|
2nd Place: Mike Trout
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images
Heading into the final two weeks of the season, it seemed certain that the rookie Mike Trout would win the AL MVP award. But Trout faded a little bit and was passed in a couple of statistical categories. But second place in the AL MVP voting is nothing to be ashamed of, especially for a rookie. If Trout continues to have seasons like this, he will win many MVP awards.
|.326 (2nd) ||30 ||83||49 (1st) ||129 (1st) ||.399 (3rd)
2012 AL MVP: Miguel Cabrera
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Congratulations to Miguel Cabrera. When you become the first player to win baseball's Triple Crown in 45 years, that pretty much guarantees your chance at winning AL MVP. Miguel Cabrera, after falling short for so many years, will finally earn an MVP award. Although the Tigers may lose the World Series, the team can boast two consecutive MVP awards (Verlander '11; Cabrera '12).
|.330 (1st) ||44 (1st) ||139 (1st) ||4||109 (2nd) ||.393 (4th)