Cabrera lifting Tigers
I know Mike Trout has done historic things, but unfortunately his Angels team is also history, eliminated from the wild-card race on Monday, the same day that Miguel Cabrera's Tigers clinched the AL Central title.
That's a difference-maker to me in the MVP vote. I will take Cabrera over Trout because one will play in the postseason and the other will not.
Trout was a better player this year, and as such is a strong candidate for the Hank Aaron Award, but the Tigers wouldn't have sniffed October without Cabrera and now they have a chance to win the World Series. There's a lot of value in that, isn't there?
Who's in playoffs?
If a player wins the Triple Crown and leads his team to a division title, he's got to be the MVP, right?
It's a testament to Mike Trout that this is even a debate. He's the most dynamic player in the American League and affects the game with his defense and speed in ways Miguel Cabrera can't.
But despite having a loaded pitching staff and a three-time MVP in Albert Pujols, Trout's Angels are headed home after Wednesday night. Cabrera's Tigers will play on, thanks in part to a September in which he had 10 homers and 27 RBIs as Detroit came from behind to win the AL Central.
If the Angels were in the playoffs, this would be a tougher call, but Cabrera gets the nod for being most valuable to his team's success.
Trout better all-around
Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera deserve to be MVP. Hey, co-MVPs wouldn't be the worst thing.
But how about this stat: The Angels are 83-57 with Mike Trout (.592 winning percentage) and 6-14 (.300) without him. The Tigers are 87-73 (.544) with Cabrera.
Missing the playoffs is the Angels' penalty for putting Trout in Triple A to start the season. He shouldn't suffer because of that, or because we focus on homers, RBIs and batting average.
While Trout holds his own in Cabrera's best categories (homers, slugging), the same can't be said for Cabrera. Trout leads the majors with 48 stolen bases. Cabrera has four. Trout has eight triples; Cabrera has none. And no one will mistake Cabrera for a Gold Glover at any position. Trout will win many.
If I had to pick, I'd take Trout.
Cabrera has delivered
Los Angeles Times
Cabrera is deserving. So is Trout.
The Trout loyalists say this: Even if you say Cabrera is slightly better on offense, Trout is so much better on defense and on the bases that he should win MVP in a landslide.
But since Aug. 1, with the Angels and Tigers scrambling for playoff position, Trout has hit .284 with 12 home runs. Cabrera has hit .343 with 19 home runs.
Yes, a victory in April counts the same as a victory in September. But players fight through injury and exhaustion in September, when every at-bat is magnified, when pressure is at its height.
A player who delivers now should get extra credit. If not, there would have been no derision in the "Mr. May" nickname George Steinbrenner gave Dave Winfield. The nod goes to Cabrera.