BBA Rookie Of The Year Awards Announced

When I voted for the AL Rookie of the Year award, I said: “There were a lot of impressive rookie performances in 2009 – especially amongst pitchers – but one guy was a fair bit better than the rest (and it’s probably not who you think).” Turns out the “probably” in that sentence was unnecessary. From the BBA press release:

“The Baseball Bloggers Alliance announced today that Andrew Bailey of the Oakland Athletics and Andrew McCutchen of the Pittsburgh Pirates were selected in a vote of the membership as American League and National League Rookies of the Year.

Bailey, who stepped into Oakland’s closer role and recorded 26 saves with a sparkling 1.84 ERA, garnered seven of the nineteen first-place votes from the participating BBA blogs and a total of 48 points overall. Rick Porcello, who pitched for the Detroit Tigers in the tie-breaking playoff game versus the Minnesota Twins to culminate a strong season, finished second with four first-place selections and 36 total points…

McCutchen started the year at AAA, but was called to the majors in June and made an immediate impact. His blend of power and speed were reflected in his twelve home runs and 22 steals in roughly a half season of work.

McCutchen received twelve of the twenty first place votes on his way to 65 points overall. Atlanta Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson was the runner-up with 50 points, including five first place nods…

The complete voting results are as follows (first-place votes in parenthesis):

American League
Andrew Bailey, Oakland (9) 48
Rick Porcello, Detroit (4) 36
Elvis Andrus, Texas (3) 28
Jeff Niemann, Tampa Bay (2) 21
Matt Wieters, Baltimore (1) 13
Gordon Beckham, Chicago (1) 9
Brett Anderson, Oakland (1) 8
Noland Reimold, Baltimore 8

National League
Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh (12) 65
Tommy Hanson, Atlanta (5) 50
J.A. Happ, Philadelphia (1) 27
Chris Coghlan, Florida (2) 20
Randy Wells, Chicago 10
Garrett Jones, Pittsburgh 6
Casey McGehee, Milwaukee 2

Here’s my immediate reaction upon seeing the results:

Brett Anderson finished 7th in BBA ROY voting, tied with Nolan Reimold. I’m the only one who picked him 1st. Also picked 2nd once. Very Sad.”

And here’s the reaction from The Tao of Stieb (emphasis added):

“Part of the fun of partaking in the Baseball Bloggers Alliance postseason voting was the notion that maybe those of us who reside outside of the press box would get it right, and prove just how vastly superior we are to the washed up hacks in the BBWAA.

After reviewing the BBA press release from yesterday (hey, they quoted us!), all we can say is: Oops.

Mind you, our choice for AL Rookie of the Year, the A’s Andrew Bailey, took the day with nine first place votes and 48 points total in the 5-3-1 scoring system. But what shocked us was that Brett Anderson, who we even considered as our choice at the top of our ballot, received one first place vote and our second place vote…and that’s it.

(And full marks to the kids at Camden Crazies, who had the stones to put Anderson at the top of their list.)

To which we say: Really? Put Anderson’s numbers up against second place finisher Rick Porcello (four first place votes), and Anderson pretty much takes the day across the board. Sure, Porcello’s ERA starts with a number 3, but he got that tenth of a point by feasting on the lesser lights in the NL Central in interleague play…

Also, some people seemed to be voting based on who they thought had generated the most hype through the season, or who had the most potential. We can’t imagine any other reason why someone would vote for Matt Wieters, or have him at the top of their list (as one voter did).

So to all of you who got your ballot completely wrong (and there seems to be a lot of you), we respectfully disagree. And we fart in your general direction.”

I didn’t think it took stones to pick the best guy, but I appreciate the complement. I was almost certain that Anderson wouldn’t win but, amongst those who appeared on ballots at all, he was on the fewest (2) and he came in last place in the voting. That is just not very good.

To put this in perspective, Anderson’s 3.8 Wins Above Replacement was equal to the combined total of 2nd place finisher Rick Porcello’s (1.9) and 5th place finisher’s Matt Wieters (1.9). It was also more than the combined total of winner Andrew Bailey’s (2.4) and Nolan Reimold’s (1.0).

I think we got the NL right though, so there is that.