Handing Out the Hardware, Part VIII: N.L. Most Valuable Player & Recap of Awards

Joel KochSenior Analyst ISeptember 11, 2008

Well, another series has come and gone. We’ve looked at Gold Gloves, Rookie of the Years, and Cy Youngs. Now, we wrap up not only the Most Valuable Player series, but the entire eight part series of “Handing Out the Hardware.”

Before I give out my final award, the National League MVP, I want to recap all of the awards thus far.

Gold Gloves


AL – Roy Halladay

NL – Brandon Webb

AL – Dioner Navarro

NL – Jason Kendall

First Base

AL – Lyle Overbay

NL – Albert Pujols

Second Base

AL – Dustin Pedroia

NL – Brandon Phillips

Third Base

AL – Adrian Beltre

NL – Troy Glaus


AL – Michael Young

NL – Miguel Tejada


AL – Torii Hunter, Nick Markakis, Grady Sizemore

NL – Ryan Braun, Nate McLouth, Hunter Pence

Rookie of the Year

AL – Evan Longoria

NL – Geovany Soto

Cy Young

AL – Roy Halladay

NL – Tim Lincecum

Most Valuable Player

AL – Carlos Quentin

Ok, now that that is finished, let’s finish this series up, shall we? To finish up this eight-part series, I’ll hand the 2008 National League Most Valuable Player award to:

Albert Pujols 1B, St. Louis Cardinals

Let it be known, there is no bias in this pick. True, I am a huge Cardinals fan, and Albert is my homeboy, but I’m picking Pujols based on what I base MVP off of: best player in the league.

Pujols has just been a machine this year. He has the “balky elbow,” that has popped up again here recently, and yet he’s tearing it up. He has, officially (as I write this), driven in 100 runs for an eighth-straight season.

He also has 33 home runs and is in a heated battle with Chipper Jones, of the Atlanta Braves, for a batting title (now batting .362 after his run batted in double in the bottom of the sixth).

He has led the Cardinals all season long from a predicted 90 loss season to a more-than-likely winning season. He has struck out 49 times and is bound for 100 walks. He’s second in the NL with hits (tied for seventh in the majors), and he’s scored 91 times, or has accounted for 158 total runs. Oh, did I mention he leads the majors in on-base percentage (.466), slugging (.655), and on-base plus slugging percentage (1.122).

Honorable Mention

Carlos Delgado 1B, New York Mets

Sorry Mets fans, but Delgado doesn’t take the cake this year. He has been huge for the resurgence of the Mets, but you can’t really base it off of that. His resurgence started when Jerry Randolph was ousted, same with the club’s resurgence. Those factor into the decision and really says, at least to me, that Randolph was the problem and everyone on team feels like playing better without him. Look at Jose Reyes and David Wright. Again, sorry. Delgado’s been great, just not the most valuable.

Larry “Chipper” Jones 3B, Atlanta Braves

This is truly an honorable mention. Early in the season, Jones was on fire. A small injury set him back and he hasn’t been on such a tear since. His team has also fallen off the map, as has his production. He’s still in the batting-title race and is still a monster with the bat, but he only gets an honorable mention.

Aramis Ramirez 3B/Alfonso Soriano OF, Chicago Cubs

Well, let that multiple curse start again. Ramirez and Soriano have proven their worth. When they are missing from that Cubs' lineup, the Cubs don’t play as well. I don’t mean a day off, I mean extended time from injury. They are the heart and soul of that lineup, but will cancel out votes because the Cubs need both to do well.

Same goes for Kevin Youkilis and Pedroia from Boston. You want to vote them MVP, but you can’t really make an argument that one, not both, is the MVP.

Ok, it’s over. As much fun as this has been, I really enjoy just randomly thinking of something to write and writing it, rather than writing a complete series.

I hope you all have enjoyed this series because I have certainly enjoyed writing it. If you don’t agree with my picks, that’s your opinion, as my picks are my opinion. I do enjoy hearing your opinions, so if you can give them in a constructive way, I’d love reading them and debating with you. Debates are the best part of sports.

Have a great weekend!