The first awards for Major League Baseball have come out, and they have been given to two deserving individuals.
Lance Berkman and Jacoby Ellsbury both won Major League Baseball's Comeback Player of the Year awards after having stellar seasons for their respective teams, the St. Louis Cardinals and Boston Red Sox.
Berkman, who last year split time with the Houston Astros and New York Yankees, hitting a combined .248 with 14 home runs and 58 RBI, found a resurgence in his longtime-rival town St. Louis, where he hit .301 with 31 home runs and 94 RBI. Berkman was also selected to the All Star team as a starter, garnering some interest in the MVP race.
Ellsbury, on the other hand, came off of a season in which he played less than 20 games due to injury. In the offseason, he was subject to trade rumors but, to his fortune, was allowed to stay in Boston. For a team that eventually self destructed, he hit .321 with 32 home runs and 105 RBI, also drawing some serious consideration for the MVP award.
Berkman, who signed a one-year contract in order to continue playing baseball, was extended for a year in September. Ellsbury, on the other hand, is eligible for arbitration, and should he win the MVP, it would be a good idea for the Red Sox to extend him.
While Ellsbury has a serious shot at the MVP award, Berkman doesn't. It's highly likely he will garner a few first place votes for his resurgence, but the award will go to somebody else, like Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp, Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun or even NL batting-title winner Jose Reyes.
Congratulations on both Berkman and Ellsbury's resurgent seasons.