Posted on: July 15, 2009 2:22 pm
Edited on: July 15, 2009 2:41 pm

Mid-Season Awards ---> Rest of 2009 predictions

Well, a disappointing 2009 for me as a Cubs fan so far.  I'm hoping to see the Cubs turn it around, get a few games above .500 and win the division.  Anyway, my point wasn't to gripe about how poorly the Cubs are playing, this is the mid-season edition, looking at who's doing well, and who's not...  Without further ado, let's start with the MVP awards:

Torii Hunter - Los Angeles Angels
.305 BA, 17 HR, 65 RBI, .380 OBP, .938 OPS
Surprise surprise, I decide to go with my favorite non-Cub player.  Here's why Torii deserves this award though, for the first half at least.  He's hitting for power, he's driving runners in.  What the Angels need him to do, he's done it.  And guess what?  The Angels are in first place in the AL West, in what was supposed to be a down year for this team (some thinking (including myself) it was the A's year).  The pitching has helped a little, but Torii Hunter is making a huge impact for this team.
Others Considered: Justin Morneau - Minnesota Twins, Joe Mauer - Minnesota Twins, Miguel Cabrera - Detroit Tigers, Ichiro Suzuki - Seattle Mariners

Can Torii keep it up after returning from injury?

Albert Pujols - St. Louis Cardinals
.332 BA, 32 HR, 87 RBI, .456 OBP, 1.179 OPS
Honestly, was there really any other choice?  So what, he didn't win the home run derby.  He's the reason, the only reason, the Cardinals are in first place.  Pujols is just unstoppable.  A ridiculous OPS of 1.179, .456 OBP, pitchers so scared of him that they're thinking about giving him the Barry Bonds treatment.  Hint pitchers: It's still not working.  If it were up to me, I'd be as cautious as ever with this guy, probably still allowing him to hit 20 more home runs.  This was the biggest no-brainer since, well, the NBA Draft and choosing Blake Griffin as the #1 pick.
Others Considered (sort of): Hanley Ramirez - Florida Marlins, Prince Fielder - Milwaukee Brewers, Raul Ibanez - Philadelphia Phillies, Chase Utley - Philadelphia Phillies

A Real No-Brainer.

AL Cy Young
Zack Greinke - Kansas City Royals
10-5, 2.12 ERA, 129 SO, 21 BB, 1.08 WHIP, .245 BAA, 127.1 IP
This kid, as you may know, got off to one of the best starts for a starting pitcher.  He's not been terrible since then, maintaining an ERA in the low 2's and still having a nice K/BB ratio.  Only Justin Verlander and Jon Lester has more K's in the American League right now and Kevin Millwood, James Shields, and CC Sabathia are the only other pitchers to have pitched more innings than Greinke.  Also, Greinke hasn't missed a start (Halladay) and hasn't really been plagued by inconsistencies (Hernandez).  The Royals may be well out of contention, but this kid is about the only bright spot on the team and he's keeping the Royals shining, um, dimly..
Others Considered: Roy Halladay - Toronto Blue Jays, Felix Hernadez - Seattle Mariners, Edwin Jackson - Detroit Tigers, Jered Weaver - Los Angeles Angels, Nick Blackburn - Minnesota Twins

Greinke continues pitching well.

NL Cy Young
Dan Haren - Arizona Diamondbacks
9-5, 2.01 ERA, 129 SO, 16 BB, .81 WHIP, .189 BAA, 130 IP
The D-Backs ace says "HI" to NL manager Charlie Manuel.  I'm not implying anything, but something says to me that Tim Lincecum shouldn't have been starting the All-Star game for the NL (though he's pitched admirably).  The only thing plaguing Haren is well, the lack of run support and the lack of a good team around him in Arizona.  Haren is like the random oasis in a desert.  OK, bad analogy, but, no matter what you say, Haren is second in IP to Adam Wainwright, third in K's to Tim Lincecum and Javier Vazquez, and has had a couple of unfair losses because of the lack of run support.  I know, if he were playing for the Cubs, it wouldn't be much better, but if he were playing for, I don't know, maybe the Brewers or the Dodgers, well, let's just say he could very well have 1 or 2 losses.  Weird, I picked two Cy Youngs from two losing teams.  Oh well.
Others Considered: Tim Lincecum - San Francisco Giants, Matt Cain - San Francisco Giants, Josh Johnson - Florida Marlins, Javier Vazquez - Atlanta Braves

Whether it be in Oakland or Arizona, Haren seems to go unnoticed.

AL Rookie of the Year (er, Mid-year)
Ricky Romero - Toronto Blue Jays
7-3, 3.00 ERA, 69 SO, 30 BB, 1.26 WHIP, .252 BAA, 87 IP
So, who is this guy?  Well, despite an injury around April (sneezing while listening to rap (blech)), Romero has been an outstanding pitcher.  Yeah, you have Bailey for the A's, and Bergesen for the O's, but the "J's" (I just had to) have a guy who's stepped up when the injured birds had fallen.  Not only is he winning, but he's pitching well, not giving up many runs, not walk a WHOLE BUNCH, and keeping nice control.  Plus, he's helped my fantasy baseball team in the Omnipotent League a whole lot.
Others Considered: Andrew Bailey - Oakland Athletics, Brad Bergesen - Baltimore Orioles, Scott Richmond - Toronto Blue Jays, Jeff Niemann - Tampa Bay Rays

Romero has had a great rookie year so far.

NL Rookie of the Year (er, Mid-year)
Randy Wells - Chicago Cubs
4-4, 2.72 ERA, 53 SO, 17 BB, 1.12 WHIP, .243 BAA, 76 IP
I apologize for the random act of biasness, but Pablo Sandoval doesn't qualify as a rookie (how sad for Kung Fu Panda).  Really, it came down to two rival players, Colby Rasmus of the Cardinals and Wells for the Cubs and I went true to my heart, yes I went there.  OK, if the Cubs had half the offense they did last year, I guarantee Wells would be 8-1 or 9-1 in his first 12 starts instead of the horrendous 4-4 he really is.  He's got great control, not walking a whole lot of hitters, and he also trusts his defense.  He's kept his ERA low, he's progressively pitching more innings for each start he takes.  Besides Ted Lilly, Wells has been the most valuable to this Cubs team (jury still out on Am-Ram).
Others Considered: Colby Rasmus - St. Louis Cardinals, Casey McGehee - Milwaukee Brewers, Ramon Troncoso - Los Angeles Dodgers, Tommy Hanson - Atlanta Braves

Wells has gotten little help from the Cubs' offense.

AL Manager of the Year
Don Wakamatsu - Seattle Mariners
46-42, 4 GB in AL West
What a job Wakamatsu has done with this Mariners team.  It helps that he has Ichiro hitting all over the place, but this is a team many expected to finish dead last in the AL West and possibly be the worst team in the AL.  Felix Hernandez, Erik Bedard, and Jarrod Washburn has helped prevent that, but Wakamatsu has stepped up as the Mariners manager.  Look at what Russell Branyan has done, how Felix Hernandez has turned his season around, and how Ichiro came back from injury.  Watch out for the M's.
Other(s) Considered: Ron Washington - Texas Rangers

NL Manager of the Year
Jim Tracy - Colorado Rockies
47-41, 9 GB in NL West
Yes I went there.  It may be a little unfair to use the entire season's record for Jim Tracy, since Clint Hurdle kinda messed it up at the beginning of the year, but honestly, it's the Rockies, who cares?  I'm just messing with you all, but seriously, Tracy has turned around a team heading into the cellar of that the NL West.  Tracy is 29-13 since taking over for Hurdle, has helped turn around Aaron Cook and has helped make Ubaldo Jimenez a consistent pitcher.  Will "Rocktober" return?
Other(s) Considered: Joe Torre - Los Angeles Dodgers, Tony La Russa - St. Louis Cardinals

AL Silver Slugger Awards
C   Joe Mauer - Minnesota Twins
1B Justin Morneau - Minnesota Twins
2B Aaron Hill - Toronto Blue Jays
3B Evan Longoria - Tampa Bay Rays
SS Jason Bartlett - Tampa Bay Rays
OF Torii Hunter - Los Angeles Angels
OF Ichiro Suzuki - Seattle Mariners
OF Jermaine Dye - Chicago White Sox
DH Adam Lind - Toronto Blue Jays
Wild Card: Ben Zobrist - Tampa Bay Rays (Didn't know where to honestly put him)
Others Considered: Victor Martinez - Cleveland Indians, Miguel Cabrera - Detroit Tigers, Paul Konerko - Chicago White Sox, Robinson Cano - New York Yankees, Scott Rolen - Toronto Blue Jays, Michael Young - Texas Rangers, Derek Jeter - New York Yankees, Juan Rivera - Los Angeles Angels, Adam Jones - Baltimore Orioles, Shin-Soo Choo - Cleveland Indians, Carl Crawford - Tampa Bay Rays, Bobby Abreu - Los Angeles Angels, Jason Kubel - Minnesota Twins

NL Silver Slugger Awards
C   Brian McCann - Atlanta Braves
1B Albert Pujols - St. Louis Cardinals
2B Chase Utley - Philadelphia Phillies
3B Pablo Sandoval - San Francisco Giants
SS Hanley Ramirez - Florida Marlins
OF Raul Ibanez - Philadelphia Phillies
OF Ryan Braun - Milwaukee Brewers
OF Brad Hawpe - Colorado Rockies
P   Micah Owings - Cincinnati Reds
Others Considered: Prince Fielder - Milwaukee Brewers, Todd Helton - Colorado Rockies, Brandon Phillips - Cincinnati Reds, Ryan Zimmerman - Washington Nationals, Mark Reynolds - Arizona Diamondbacks, Miguel Tejada - Houston Astros, Adam Dunn - Washington Nationals, Justin Upton - Arizona Diamondbacks, Hunter Pence - Houston Astros, Matt Kemp - Los Angeles Dodgers, Cody Ross - Florida Marlins, Yovani Gallardo - Milwaukee Brewers, Carlos Zambrano - Chicago Cubs

Rest of 2009 Predictions (not including records)
AL East
Boston Red Sox
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays
Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles

AL Central
Detroit Tigers
Minnesota Twins
Chicago White Sox
Cleveland Indians
Kansas City Royals

AL West
Los Angeles Angels
Seattle Mariners
Texas Rangers
Oakland Athletics

AL Wild Card
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays
Seattle Mariners
Texas Rangers
Minnesota Twins

NL East
Philadelphia Phillies
New York Mets
Atlanta Braves
Florida Marlins
Washington Nationals

NL Central
St. Louis Cardinals
Chicago Cubs
Milwaukee Brewers
Houston Astros
Cincinnati Reds
Pittsburgh Pirates

NL West
Los Angeles Dodgers
San Francisco Giants
Colorado Rockies
San Diego Padres
Arizona Diamondbacks

NL Wild Card
San Francisco Giants
Chicago Cubs
Colorado Rockies
New York Mets

Red Sox over Tigers in 4
Angels over Yankees in 4

Red Sox over Angels in 6

Dodgers over Cardinals in 4
Giants over Phillies in 5

Dodgers over Giants in 7

World Series
Dodgers over Red Sox in 7

I hope you enjoyed reading this.  Any disagreements you may comment on, but no "BLAH BLAH BLAH I HAVE A LOUD COMPLAINING VOICE," OK?  I have rights to be homer and will be at any cost.  :)  Have a good rest of the season, good luck to your team, and enjoy baseball fans.

Category: MLB
Posted on: December 16, 2008 1:19 am
Edited on: December 16, 2008 1:21 am

Final Regular Season Poll

Well, here's the link to my pre-season poll so that you can compare this one to that one.  Hope you enjoy this and enjoy the bowl season.  I might have something special up for the bowl season, but we'll see...

Pre-season poll

1. Florida Gators (12-1) (8-1) - Counting the SEC championship game within the record, the Florida Gators had an outstanding season.  There were concerns about the defense to begin the year, but the Gators were able to go against these odds and are now SEC champs and in the national championship game.
Bowl Game: National Championship vs. No. 2 Oklahoma - Jan. 8

2. Oklahoma Sooners (12-1) (8-1) - The Sooners' only loss this was to a great Texas team who many felt should be in the national championship game.  The Sooners are recepients of the Big XII title once again, dominating a very overmatched Missouri team.  They are hoping for not another BCS choke.
Bowl Game: National Championship vs. No. 1 Florida - Jan. 8

3. Utah Utes (12-0) (8-0) - Many thought at the beginning of the season that it would be the Brigham Young Cougars busting the BCS, but instead it will be the Utah Utes facing Alabama in a BCS bowl.  The Utes had a terrific season, beating teams like Brigham Young, Texas Christian, and Oregon State.
Bowl Game: Sugar Bowl vs. No. 5 Alabama - Jan. 2

4. Boise State Broncos (12-0) (8-0) - Many also thought Fresno State had a good shot at busting the BCS out of the WAC.  I am one of the few that thinks that Boise State got snubbed, well, sort of.  Boise State still gets a great match up in their bowl game, against Texas Christian.
Bowl Game:
San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl vs. No. 11 Texas Christian - Dec. 23

5. Alabama Crimson Tide (12-1) (8-1) - The Crimson Tide's magical season came to an end when the Gators defeated them in the SEC championship game.  The Crimson Tide need to finish strong as they face a formidable Utah team in the Sugar Bowl.  I hope it is a great match up.
Bowl Game: Sugar Bowl vs. No. 3 Utah - Jan. 2

6. Texas Longhorns (11-1) (7-1) - Some Longhorns fans are upset with the selection of Oklahoma to go to the Big XII title game and also to the national championship game to face Florida, but they still had an outstanding season with Colt McCoy bouncing back from a sophomore year where he struggled a bit.
Bowl Game: Fiesta Bowl vs. No. 10 Ohio State - Jan. 5

7. Southern California Trojans (11-1) (8-1) - Once again, the Trojans are kings of the Pac-Ten and heading to the Rose Bowl.  It might not be so easy this time around as they get to face the Penn State Nittany Lions, who are the Big Ten champs.  Probably one of the better bowl match ups this year.
Bowl Game: Rose Bowl vs. No. 8 Penn State - Jan. 1
8. Penn State Nittany Lions (11-1) (7-1) - The Nittany Lions were just a few seconds away from a perfect season.  The Iowa Hawkeyes got them in the end, but still a very good season for JoePa as he continues to coach.  Now the class of the Big Ten will try to gain a Rose Bowl win, facing the Trojans of Southern Cal.
Bowl Game: Rose Bowl vs. No. 7 Southern California - Jan. 1

. Texas Tech Red Raiders (11-1) (7-1) - Graham Harrell and Michael Crabtree are still the dynamic duo that they were last year.  I really thought that Michael Crabtree deserved a shot at the Heisman, but I guess it's too late now.  The Red Raiders now face a Rebels team that is much improved.
Bowl Game: Cotton Bowl vs. No. 17 Mississippi - Jan. 2

10. Ohio State Buckeyes (10-2) (7-1) - Terrell Pryor's freshman year was surely impressive.  The Buckeyes are rewarded with a BCS bowl berth, facing the Texas Longhorns.  It will definitely be a tough match up for the Buckeyes, who impressed me by coming back the way they did after suffering a beatdown against Southern Cal.
Bowl Game: Fiesta Bowl vs. No. 6 Texas - Jan. 5

11. Texas Christian Horned Frogs (10-2) (7-1) - The Horned Frogs of TCU had a nice year.  They were able to beat Brigham Young, but couldn't keep up with Utah.  Nonetheless, a good year for this non-BCS team and they get Boise State in the Poinsettia Bowl.
Bowl Game: San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl vs. No. 4 Boise State -
Dec. 23

12. Cincinnati Bearcats (11-2) (6-1) - The Bearcats win the Big East title in football for the first time in school history and there may be more to come if Brian Kelly stays.  He's done a nice job, turning this team in a Big East contender.  They get rewarded with a BCS bowl match up.
Bowl Game: Orange Bowl vs. No. 19 Virginia Tech - Jan. 1

13. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (9-3) (5-3) - The Yellow Jackets may have not won their conference, but they had an outstanding year under first year coach Paul Johnson.  The triple option offense does still work, as Johnson proved.  The Yellow Jackets now get Louisiana State.
Bowl Game: Chick-fil-A Bowl vs. Louisiana State - Dec. 31

14. Oklahoma State Cowboys (9-3) (5-3) -
Aside from the whole "I'm a man!  I'm 40!" stuff, you can't help but be impressed with what Mike Gundy has done with the Cowboys.  The Cowboys may not have been able to pull out a win against the big 3 of the Big XII south, but they kept it close against Texas and for awhile against Oklahoma.
Bowl Game: Holiday Bowl vs. No. 15 Oregon - Dec. 30

15. Oregon Ducks (9-3) (7-2) -
Despite all of the quarterback shuffling the Ducks had to go through, they had a respectable season and are rewarded with a match up against Oklahoma State.  Their win against Oregon State helped make this year very satisfying for Ducks fans.
Bowl Game: Holiday Bowl vs. No. 14 Oklahoma State - Dec. 30

16. Northwestern Wildcats (9-3) (5-3) -
Pat Fitzgerald has done a great job turning this team around.  The Wildcats made a very nice turnaround from last year as they propelled themselves to a 9 win season.  The Wildcats hope for ten wins when their bowl game rolls around.
Bowl Game: Alamo Bowl vs. Missouri - Dec. 29

17. Mississippi Rebels (8-4) (5-3) -
Houston Nutt's first year at Mississippi was certainly an impressive one.  They were able to upset Florida early in the year, and then finished strong, including a big win against Louisiana State, to go 8-4 on the season.  A very big turnaround, one in which Jevan Sneed was also a part of.
Bowl Game: Cotton Bowl vs. No. 9 Texas Tech - Jan. 2

18. Georgia Bulldogs (9-3) (6-2) -
Matthew Stafford and Knoshown Moreno both had terrific years this year and are looking like they're headed for the draft.  They have to finish off the year against a tough Michigan State team as Stafford and Moreno (maybe) look to go out winners.
Bowl Game: Capital One Bowl vs. No. 21 Michigan State - Jan. 1

19. Virginia Tech Hokies (9-4) (6-3) -
The Hokies are once again ACC champs thanks to Beamer and Bud Foster.  The Hokies recovered from a slow start, making the decision to remove Tyrod Taylor's redshirt and allow him to run and pass all over the field like he should.  Their reward: a BCS bowl.
Bowl Game: Orange Bowl vs. No. 12 Cincinnati - Jan. 1

20. Ball State Cardinals (12-1) (8-1) -
The dream of a perfect season ended when the Cardinals ran into a feisty Buffalo Bulls team led by Turner Gill.  Coach Hoke, though, fielded a team that look destined for a perfect year.  It wasn't the case.  Nate Davis is one quaterback that is definitely worth watching.
Bowl Game: GMAC Bowl vs. Tulsa - Jan. 6

21. Michigan State Spartans (9-3) (6-2) -
Michigan State didn't look very good in their losses (Penn State, Ohio State, and California (close)), but they have looked good in general on the year.  Javon Ringer is a definite workhorse as he'll hope to tire out the Georgia defensive line and linebacker corps.
Bowl Game: Capital One Bowl vs. No. 18 Georgia - Jan. 1

22. Brigham Young Cougars (10-2) (6-2) -
At the start of the year, many felt the Cougars had the best shot at busting the BCS.  The Cougars were two losses away (TCU and Utah) from making that happen.  Now they face Arizona in the Las Vegas Bowl, which could be a good game.  Max Hall and Austin Collie look to return for next year and continue their dominance.
Bowl Game: Las Vegas Bowl vs. Arizona - Dec. 20

23. Iowa Hawkeyes (8-4) (5-3) -
Not a bad year for Iowa considering where they were at before the season started.  It seems as if Kirk Ferentz has been given chance after chance after chance.  The win against Penn State was the exclamation mark this year as Ferentz hopes to build on this good year.
Bowl Game: Outback Bowl vs. South Carolina - Jan. 1

24. Nebraska Cornhuskers (8-4) (5-3) -
This is slightly biased, but the Huskers finished strong, winning 5 of their last 6.  They had a close loss to Texas Tech and Virginia Tech.  A couple of mistakes that weren't made could've put Nebraska at 10-2 on the year.  Bo Pelini did a great job turning a 5-7 team to an 8-4 team in one year.
Bowl Game: Gator Bowl vs. Clemson - Jan. 1

25. Boston College Eagles (9-4) (5-4) -
Give credit to Jeff Jagodzinski as he helped turn this team back into contenders even though they lost Matt Ryan.  The Eagles lost yet again in the ACC championship game to Virginia Tech, but exceeded expectations in the jumbled up ACC.
Bowl Game: Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl vs. Vanderbilt - Dec. 31
Category: NCAAF
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com