The results are in and the American League and National League Managers of the Year have been named, courtesy of the MLB Network.
Washington Nationals skipper Davey Johnson won easily in the National League, receiving 23 of 32 first-place votes by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.
Here's a look at the voting results for the National League:
|Davey Johnson, Nationals||23||4||4||131|
|Dusty Baker, Reds||5||14||10||77|
|Bruce Bochy, Giants||4||10||11||61|
|Fredi Gonzalez, Braves||4||5||17|
|Bud Black, Padres||1||1|
|Mike Matheny, Cardinals||1||1|
Johnson helped lead the Nationals to a major-league-best 98 wins, balancing a team with young stars like Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper.
The award marks his second, with his first coming in 1997 as the manager of the Baltimore Orioles. Johnson also becomes the fifth manager to win the award in both leagues. He joins Bobby Cox, Tony La Russa, Jim Leyland and Lou Piniella as the only men to do so.
While the award will look nice on Johnson's mantle, many will wonder what the Nats could have done with Strasburg in the playoffs. The decision to shut him down will be second-guessed for many years, especially if the Nats don't win a title in the next few years.
Nonetheless, Johnson is the only manager from the National League who deserved the award. He helped improve the Nats' win total by 18.
Baker and Bochy each had good teams coming into the season, and they did what any good manager would do. To have given either one the award would have been wrong, considering what Johnson was able to accomplish.
His ability to lead a team that saw three managers just a season ago is evidence enough that he deserved the award.
Here's a look at the voting results for the American League:
|Bob Melvin, Athletics||16||12||116|
|Buck Showalter, Orioles||12||16||108|
|Robin Ventura, White Sox||12||12|
|Joe Maddon, Rays||7||7|
|Joe Girardi, Yankees||5||5|
|Jim Leyland, Tigers||2||2|
|Ron Washington, Rangers||2||2|
This was one of the closest votes in recent memory, with Melvin just beating out Showalter for the award.
Each deserved the award in their own right.
Melvin led another young group of A's in a surprising showing (94 wins), including a six-game stretch at the end of the year which included a sweep of the Texas Rangers.
Showalter, on the other hand, led a team to 93 wins despite a 4.42 ERA by its starting rotation.
Where Melvin likely won the award was in that final six-game stretch, which included some of the most exciting baseball of the season.
In the final game of the regular season, Melvin's Athletics scored 11 unanswered runs to take the division and force the Rangers into the Wild Card one-game playoff.
And the Athletics did all this with the second-lowest payroll in baseball.
Any way you look at it, the American League couldn't have done wrong with the selection of either Melvin or Showalter. Both showed what they were capable of doing with teams that didn't have outrageous payrolls.
So, did the writers get it right?
Absolutely. Over the last five years, the writers have shown that managers of teams with outlandish contracts aren't guaranteed to get the award.
The writers actually vote on which manager does the best managing. Who would've thought?
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