As we near the halfway point in the 2013 Major League Baseball season, I thought we would look at the Rookie of the Year race. We last looked at the race in early May and there was some strong competition with the Cardinals’ Shelby Miller. That competition still exists and a new candidate has joined the fray, Yasiel Puig. Let’s take a look at who the top candidates are after about 70 games.
Shelby Miller – 7-4, 2.21 ERA, 91 K, 81.1 IP
Miller is probably the front-runner for the award at the current moment. His last start, on June 12th, was his worst of the season and he still went 6 innings and struck out 10 batters while allowing 4 runs. We will see how he will rebound in his next start. Something that might hurt Miller is an innings limit as Cardinals have not announced their plans for him in the late summer.
Yasiel Puig – .479, 4 HR, 10 RBI, 1 SB, 13 games
Puig was called up by the Los Angeles Dodgers on June 3rd and he hasn’t looked back since. Puig has the hype and the notoriety to take the award away from Shelby Miller and playing in Los Angeles doesn’t hurt either. Puig’s numbers should cool off some and he should soon fall back to earth, but his popularity is rising and that is a bad sign for Shelby Miller.
Evan Gattis – .256, 14 HR, 37 RBI, 52 games
Gattis is some-what the “Puig Jr” when it comes to an amazing start to the year. Also Gattis’ personal story should help him in the voting as well. Another thing that won’t hurt, is that Gattis has been named the National League Rookie of the Month for both April and May. Something that could hurt him, but hasn’t yet, is lack of playing time. The Braves are trying their best to get him out there as much as possible, but with B.J. Upton heating up, Gattis may find himself on the bench more.
Hyun-jin Ryu – 6-2, 2.85 ERA, 75 K, 85 IP
Now we are starting to get into long shots at this point. Ryu’s numbers match up to Miller’s and Miller has the better numbers all the way around. Ryu also plays for the Dodgers which could be a positive in that it is a big market and it could also be a negative in that his teammate, Puig, will also be competing for the award.
Julio Teheran – 5-3, 3.36 ERA, 66 K, 83 IP
Like Ryu, Teheran has competition on his own team for the award. Teheran has the talent to string together some awesome starts, but at this point I would put him behind Miller and Ryu in the pitchers category.
Jose Fernandez – 4-3, 3.11 ERA, 77 K, 72 IP
Fernandez could be Shelby Miller’s biggest competition on the pitching side when it comes to the Rookie of the Year and Cardinal fans saw exactly what Fernandez was all about on June 14th when he dominated for 7 innings. Playing for Florida has got to be a negative for Fernandez as nobody is watching.
There are some young players out there that are having great seasons but do not qualify for Rookie of the Year status. To be a rookie, a player has to have less than 130 at-bats, or less than 50 innings pitched, or can not be on the active roster for more than 45 days. Guys like Tyler Scaggs, Jean Segura, and Matt Harvey are not eligible for the 2013 Rookie of the Year.
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