Originally written on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 11/16/14
Mlb-all-star-futures-game

Over the last few days, I’ve seen multiple articles about how Miguel Cabrera should receive serious consideration for the AL MVP award, in light of the fact that he has a decent shot at becoming baseball’s first Triple Crown winner in 40+ years.

This comes after a summer of Mike Trout fever, wherein baseball minds across the country agreed that we were seeing something special, someone more deserving of hype than Bryce Harper, someone carrying a team more than Josh Hamilton, someone more valuable to his lineup than the greatest hitter on earth, Albert Pujols.

Then, finally, on today’s Pardon The Interruption, Tony Kornheiser and Chris Broussard intimated that if Cabrera wins the Triple Crown, or even finishes first in average and RBIs and second in homers, it would be a travesty if he did not win.

That’s utterly insane.

Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera are the clear leaders for the AL MVP. But one stands out over the other. (Image credit: JULIAN H. GONZALEZ / Detroit Free Press)

Trout’s Overall Value Trumps (Potential) Triple Crown

First of all, and this cannot be stressed enough: the Triple Crown is dumb.

It’s a completely arbitrary grouping of statistics that anyone who made it even halfway through Moneyball knows is not representative of someone’s overall value.

Batting average is a weak substitute for on base percentage, RBIs are completely random in many cases, and there are a million better ways to measure value know that we have finally broken free of the baseball dogma of the last 100 years.

Kornheiser finished his point by saying the only way that Trout should win is if he is having an all-time great season – and said, “Is he?” As if he isn’t.

He is.

This is not news to anyone that has been paying a modicum of attention.

Watching Trout fly around the bases and rob home runs should be proof enough to old-school baseball fans who need to see it to believe it. Reading his stat lines is enough for anyone statistically inclined. By Baseball Reference‘s count, he’s having the best Wins Above Replacement season since Barry Bonds in 2003, and the best non-steroid season by a position player since Cal Ripken in 1991.

He’s also 20 years old, and by some accounts already a Hall of Fame lock.

So, who is more valuable – Trout or Cabrera?

For two teams that are looking like they will miss the playoffs, it may be easier to compare. If the Tigers and Angels both spend October at home, it’s hard to give that winning boost to either hitter.

Their slash lines are basically even – Cabrera has an edge in slugging thanks to more homers and doubles. But Trout has the edge in runs scored, a huge advantage in stolen bases (46, with only four caught stealing), and an enormous, game-changing edge in the field. BR says his fielding has been worth two and a half wins this year, while Cabrera has cost his team a half-win in the field.

WAR is not the end all and be all. It’s a great way to gauge overall value of a player, in conjunction with other old-school counting stats. But 10.3 WAR is an all-time number, whereas Cabrera’s 6.3 is not even as good as last season’s 7.3 WAR.

Just because Cabrera finishes tops in three different counting stats that haven’t changed since the 1890s doesn’t mean he’s the best player in the AL this year – that would be Trout, no doubt.

The post AL MVP Debate Over, Triple Crown Or Not – Trout Is Tops appeared first on Midwest Sports Fans.


GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: Irving scores career-high 55, hits game winner

FCS star QB considering transferring to Oregon

Gronk on interest in his partying: 'I'm a baller'

Jim Harbaugh looking to flip No. 1 quarterback recruit

Colts' suspension of Richardson voids $3.1 million

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Five players replacing the biggest names in Pac-12 for 2015

Report: Broncos hire Phillips as defensive coordinator

LeBron James misses Cavs-Blazers game due to wrist injury

Iceman: Thompson’s 37-point quarter doesn't break his record

Mayweather visited Pacquiao’s hotel room for private meeting

Seahawks GM: Russell Wilson's contract 'presents challenges'

Jimbo Fisher's extension could be worth $44 million

Morris twins investigated for possible assault

Padres are bringing back the brown pinstripes

Phil Jackson's old Knicks teams used to deflate balls

David Blatt: There should be more LeBron MVP talk

Richard Sherman, girlfriend expecting son during SB week

WATCH: Marshawn, Gronk play Mortal Kombat with Conan

Armstrong: I’d use PEDs again under same circumstances

Top five free agent quarterbacks

Report: NFL investigators to consult physicist on Deflategate

5 X-factors for Super Bowl XLIX

Best prop bets about the Super Bowl broadcast

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Blatt wants more LeBron MVP talk

Best Super Bowl ads of all-time

5 X-factors for Super Bowl XLIX

Ten worst teams to ever play in a SB

Six MLB teams going all-in on 2015

Patriots' keys to Super Bowl victory

Seahawks' keys to Super Bowl victory

DeflateGate ball could fetch $50K

Doug Baldwin ready for Revis Island

Top storylines for Super Bowl XLIX

Barnes unhappy with NBA over fine

Does MLB need more offense in the modern game?

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.