Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Beauty or the Beast?
2005-11-13 15:41
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

So after all the hot air and furious debate about who should win the AL MVP, the award will be announced on Monday at around 2:00. I'm not interested in rehashing the arguments now, but I am curious as to who you think will win it (not who should win but who will win)?

My money is on Ortiz, though I hope I'm wrong.

2005-11-13 15:51:10
1.   singledd
ARod had an (ever so) slighty better year offensively and a good year on D. He had a measurably better year all around. Papi was MVC (most very clutch) and may take MVP.
2005-11-13 16:02:59
2.   randym77
I think it's going to be A-Rod. Because his glove is as good as his bat.
2005-11-13 16:20:18
3.   lem
Ortiz, because the world knows no justice.
2005-11-13 16:37:04
4.   Suffering Bruin
Ortiz will get it because most writers prefer intangibles over hard evidence. It makes them feel smart, makes them seem like they're in the "know", that they understand the game within the game.

One of the more curious aspects of 21st century sportswriting is how hard the writers work to create reasons why ARod should not get the plaque. As a Mariner, Griffey was a better player, right? And then in Texas, he never swung the bat in a pressure situation. As a Yankee, well, what thinking human being would trade ARod for Derek Jeter? Yes, all of these arguments are specious if not entirely spacey but there they are, articulated again and again.

2005-11-13 17:07:50
5.   Jen
Oritz will win it, with Alex rounding out the second-place Yankees trifecta.
2005-11-13 17:24:58
6.   BklynBomber
Who will win it: Ortiz.

Who should win it: A-Rod.

That's just the nature of the way things is...

2005-11-13 17:48:28
7.   Pseudonym
I think it's a tough one for voters, because on the one hand, they hate A-Rod, and love Ortiz for his clutchliness and other so-called "intangibles," but on the other hand, they really hate DH's, and will penalize Ortiz for not playing the field.

In the end I think A-Rod will take it.

2005-11-13 23:18:09
8.   abr
Suffering Bruin pretty much speaks for me. I happen to work at a newspaper with a guy who has an MVP vote, and his vote went to Ortiz because, you know, you just can't measure what he means to that team. Arrrrgghh.

My paper ran a chart comparing the two, and we included each player's salary, obviously implying the Bosox were getting more "bang for their buck." Fortunately I wasn't working that day because I'd have gone ballistic. (Aside from how irrelevant it is, running the flat annual salary doesn't even indicate how much of A-Rod's the Yanks are actually paying.) MVP voters were shafting A-Rod long before the $252 million contract, but the money sure as hell plays into it now.

NL vote will be worse though. At least Big Papi probably is the No. 2 guy in the AL. Andruw Jones may not even be in the NL's top 10.

2005-11-14 00:25:44
9.   Saburo
Ortiz. Because The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.

Also, A-Rod already has a trophy so this "evens things out."

2005-11-14 01:15:08
10.   Hank
Rodríguez deserves it, and Rodríguez will win it.
There are enough old school writers who still won't vote for a DH. In fact, it wouldn't surprize me if some guys even left Ortíz completely off their ballots.
2005-11-14 02:55:51
11.   debris
Interesting numbers in the Boston Herald today. I have no idea where Tony Massarotti, their Sox beat man, got these numbers.

Papi was first in the AL in "rbi in clutch situations" in 2005. Arod was 66th.

2005-11-14 05:38:22
12.   Alex Belth
Steve Lombardi doesn't think Rodriguez will win either:

2005-11-14 05:42:27
13.   Alex Belth
Here's David Pinto's take (including a link to Gordon Edes' column in the Boston Globe):

2005-11-14 05:45:13
14.   Alex Belth
"Simply put, he does more things more often to help the Yankees win than Ortiz does for the Red Sox. Oh, and did I also mention he's been much better against the AL contenders (.323, 18 homers, 46 RBI against the Red Sox, White Sox, Indians, Angels and A's) than Ortiz (.276, 12, 45 against the Yankees, White Sox, Indians, Angels and A's)? If you're looking for one more piece of evidence to make the choice easier, the little three-game series in Boston this weekend should come in handy."

Tom Verducci

2005-11-14 06:05:31
15.   Nick from Washington Heights
I'm not a betting man, but I'd put good money on A-Rod. I think you have to factor in the national press's distaste for the GM. But most importantly, the 3 game series all but sealed the fate of this race. Remember, the writers voted immediately after those 3 games, in which A-Rod had 4 hits in the clinching game. To me, I'm guessing A-Rod wins by a good amount.
2005-11-14 06:15:20
16.   jedi
Ortiz, because like Rivera, this will be his "Lifetime Achievement Award"


2005-11-14 06:15:50
17.   jdsarduy
During the course of the season all I heard from sports analyst in the media is that Vlad won it last yr with a great September and A-Rod and or Ortiz might do the same. I also head whomever wins the division could be factor in the MVP voting.
When you look at the numbers for A-Rod and Ortiz for the month of Sep granted Ortiz's numbers are better but not by much. It took a great Sep for Ortiz to catch up to A-Rod's numbers and even with David's great bat in Sep it didn't help Sox maintain their lead in the AL East. I think Ortiz's numbers are great but just a little deceiving. David was put in all those game winning situations b/c the Sox pitching staff gave up so many runs especially in the late innings, with Mariano the Yanks didn't have that problem. If you go by the numbers they put up in Sep and the division winner, then it should be A-Rod. If you go by the overall numbers, then it should be A-Rod. If you go by the over all play, then it should be A-Rod. A-Rod prevented runs from coming across with his defensive, while the Red Sox said we won't put in Ortiz on defensive b/c he'll hurt us, that has to count for something. If Ortiz had a much better yr then A-Rod, and if he helped his team win the division, I might give it to him. But that's not the case, I would be surprised if Ortiz wins it. A-Rod should win it
2005-11-14 06:44:12
18.   DJPF
Living up in here in Rhode Island, all the talk is about making the big hit, when it counted most. Of course, the New England slant is to Ortiz. As a media chosen award, I think the nod goes to Ortiz. He made a lot of headlines. That doesn't take away from the season A-Rod put together. I think it is possible for A-Rod to be the best player in the league, and Ortiz to be the most valuable to his team.
2005-11-14 06:59:23
19.   Ben
Wouldn't it be nice if we knew what the hell these awards were for? Then we could argue the merits of players, instead of each vote being a referendum on the definition of the award itself.
Cy young means most wins? or best pitcher? MVP means best player or most valuable to their teams...

Now wait a minute!... Murmurmurmurmur. Grumble-rubble-rubble.

2005-11-14 07:00:35
20.   Felix Heredia
If clutch hits is the measure, why didn't Sheffield beat out Vladdy in 2004? Apart from batting average, their stats were comparable.
2005-11-14 07:09:00
21.   Shawn Clap
If the votes really are cast on the Monday between the Regular Season & the Post Season (ABR, any truth to this?) I think Arod will get it.

If for no other reason than Arod helped his team control its destiny and won the pennent.

While Ortiz and his team relied on Cleveland losses to sneak into the dance.

I think that would be fresh in the minds of voters on that Monday.

2005-11-14 07:30:24
22.   pistolpete
I think if it was up to the players, it would probably be Ortiz - however, based on the AL CY Young voting and how strict the voters seemed to want to be with their selection of Colon over a relief pitcher in Rivera, I'm betting that A-Rod wins it based on a strict view that only a player with a glove should take the award...

Where in the rules does it say that MVP is only an award based on stats in the offensive category?

2005-11-14 09:00:11
23.   Shaun P
Anyone here from Wisconsin? Are the local papers following Ortiz around, to see if he's flying today?

After last week's Colon flying-leak fiasco, I wonder if anyone else is being tracked?

I think old-school bias against DHs will carry the day, and A-Rod wins.

2005-11-14 09:42:16
24.   Marc Normandin
A couple of things...

I'm a Red Sox fan first of all (boo, hiss and all those things) but as a fan of sabermetrics, I think ARod should win. As a fan of weird streaks and such, I want David Ortiz to win. The Red Sox have had an MVP in every decade since Jimmie Foxx won in 1938.

1938 - Jimmie Foxx
1946 - Ted Williams
1949 - Ted Williams
1958 - Jackie Jensen
1967 - Carl Yastrzemski
1975 - Fred Lynn
1978 - Jim Rice
1986 - Roger Clemens
1995 - Mo Vaughn
2005 - David Ortiz(?)

Sabermetrics wins the battle in my mind, so to ensure order I think ARod deserves the trophy. But if he does not get it, I won't fret as much, since an interesting historical streak will survive.

2005-11-14 09:42:43
25.   Marc Normandin
Oh yeah, and I think Ortiz might win.
2005-11-14 09:58:49
26.   abr
Quote: If the votes really are cast on the Monday between the Regular Season & the Post Season (ABR, any truth to this?) I think Arod will get it.

Yes, that's true. Can't risk postseason performance swaying voters.

I still suspect it'll be Ortiz, but I wouldn't be shocked either way. Several times in September I read that the winner would be determined by who won the division. We'll see in a few hours.

2005-11-14 09:59:42
27.   pistolpete
Yanks had the same sort of streak going until the 90's, fwiw.
2005-11-14 10:04:06
28.   pistolpete
Does anyone think that 4 for 5 performance in the AL East clinching game (Ortiz 1 for 4 in same game) might have clinched it?
2005-11-14 10:10:56
29.   Start Spreading the News
If Ortiz does win, he should fly on the "Big Papi"
2005-11-14 10:40:33
30.   YankeeInMichigan
The anti-DH argument in its typical form (How can someone be most valuable if he only plays half the game?) comes across as silly, but its opponents (and probably its proponents as well) miss two basic points:
1) Although playing defense does not add much value, playing exceptional defense certainly does.
2) Strong-hitting third basemen are less readily available than strong-hitting designated hitters. As VORP illustrates, a third baseman adds more value with his bat than does an offensively comparable designated hitter.
2005-11-14 11:04:36
31.   Dimelo
ARod wins the MVP.

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