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2018 MLB Awards: The EH Team Picks

Updated: Jan 10, 2019

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With the 2018 BBWAA award finalists being announced on Monday, we decided that our team here at The EH! Sports would take a crack at who we thought deserved each award. We also included a few names that should also be considered for each category.

Without further ado, here's what we came up with.

AL Manager of the Year

Ameer Hamid: Alex Cora

First year manager on the best team in baseball in the regular season, don’t overthink it. Oh yeah, he also won the World Series.

Honourable Mentions: Bob Melvin, Kevin Cash

Brant Dubeau: Kevin Cash

Cash took an abysmal Rays team expected to do nothing, did some ridiculous things with their line up all year long, and managed them into a 90 win season. On a team lacking any sort of star power, that is nothing short of a miracle.

Honourable Mentions: Bob Melvin, Alex Cora

Jake Bond: Alex cora

First year manager that brought the best out of his team, handled his stars, and ultimately won it all this year.

Honourable mentions : Kevin Cash, Bob Melvin

Mauro Cesario: Alex Cora

Took a high powered Boston Red Sox team, with plenty of expectations this year, all the way to World Series glory in his very first year as manager.

Honourable Mentions: Kevin Cash, Bob Melvin

Nick Bowins: Bob Melvin

Took the Oakland A’s, who nobody expected to be good, and turned them into a Wild Card team with creative pitcher/reliever management, and a well utilized, potent offensive lineup.

Honourable Mentions: Alex Cora, Kevin Cash

NL Manager of the Year

Ameer: Bud Black

This is the most wide-open of the awards this year because no one stands out. Any of the honourable mentions could win the award.

Honourable Mentions: Craig Counsell, Brian Snitker, Gabe Kapler

Brant: Brian Snitker

If the Phillies didn’t fall off the face of the earth in the last month and a half then this is Kaplers award without a second thought. Unfortunately some terrible play up and down the lineup dropped the team below .500, giving Gabe zero chance at this one. Snitker, on the other hand, took a young, unproven bunch of kids and won a division title in a division that includes the Washington Nationals.

Honourable Mentions: Gabe Kapler, Craig Counsell, Bud Black

Jake: Craig Counsell

A tough award to pick for, but Craig Counsell makes the best case in my eyes because of the postseason success and coming just short of beating the dodgers in game 7.

Honourable mentions: Bud Black, Brian Snitker

Mauro: Craig Counsell

A bit of a toss up for me, but winning the NL Central and getting the Brewers back to the playoffs for the first time since 2011 is a good enough feat to win me over.

Honourable Mentions: Brian Snitker, Bud Blacm

Nick: Craig Counsell

I think this is a close call, but I give the edge to Counsell for the Brewers getting into the postseason after their crazy month of September, and taking them all the way to the NLCS. Loved the way he utilized his pen, and his decision to start Wade Miley for 1 batter to get the better matchups will always stand out to me.

Honourable Mention: Brian Snitker

AL Rookie of the Year

Ameer: Shohei Ohtani

Ohtani was a better hitter than Miguel Andujar, he also had a higher WAR as a hitter. Throw in his pitching stats, he’s still the Rookie of the Year despite the time that he has missed.

Honorable Mentions: Miguel Andujar, Gleyber Torres

Brant: Miguel Andujar

If Shohei Ohtani doesn’t battle injuries all year, then this is probably his award without a thought. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case, giving Andujar the decided advantage in my opinion. His .297/.328/.527 slash line, to go along with 27 HRs and 92 RBIs make him a lock for this award.

Honorable Mentions: Gleyber Torres, Shohei Ohtani

Jake: Shohei Ohtani

Despite missing considerable time due to injury, what Ohtani has shown is pretty damn good. The stats back it up with a high WAR and solid batting all year long.

Honourable mentions: Miguel Andujar, Gleyber Torres

Mauro: Shohei Ohtani

Even though he battled through an injury-riddled season, Ohtani is the winner for me. Mix in the value he offers as a pitcher with a great stat line and he just edges out the two Yankees’ rookies.

Honourable Mentions: Gleyber Torres, Miguel Andujar

Nick: Shohei Ohtani

He missed time to injury, he wasn’t able to pitch as we all hoped (though when he did he was healthy) yet he still gets my vote. He swung the bat great all year, and finished with a higher WAR than either Andujar or Torres. If he played in the little league diamond that the Yankees do, he would have put up the better numbers between the 3 of these guys.

Honourable Mentions: Miguel Andujar

NL Rookie of the Year

Ameer: Ronald Acuña Jr.

Do we need an explanation? Acuña’s going to be unanimous winner from The EH! Sports team.

Honourable Mentions: Juan Soto, Ozzie Albies

Brant: Ronald Acuña Jr.

Breaks my heart that 19 year old Juan Soto won’t win this one given the numbers he put up; but, Acuña was unstoppable all year long. He managed to carry a young Atlanta Braves squad to a postseason appearance, which is something incredible that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Honourable Mentions: Juan Soto, Ozzie Albies

Jake: Ronald Acuña Jr

Acuña Jr is a beast. He leads National League rookies in home runs, slugging, iso, stolen bases, and WAR. On top of that he is basically in the top 5 for every other category.

Honourable mentions : Juan Soto, Ozzie Albies

Mauro: Ronald Acuña Jr

Kid can play the game.

Honourable Mentions: Juan Soto, Ozzie Albies

Nick: Ronald Acuña Jr

Acuña was an animal all year. His streak of lead off home runs was ridiculous. His bat speed is crazy. A .293/.366/.592 slash line is absolutely gross from a 20 year old. I do love Walker Buehler, but Acuña has the much better stat line.

Honourable Mentions: Juan Soto, Walker Buehler

AL Comeback Player of the Year

Ameer: David Price

This is a pretty bad year for “comeback” players as their weren’t that many bad players in 2017 that turned it around in 2018. David Price was seen as one of the worst contracts in baseball, but now he “holds all the cards,” after a great season and showing in the postseason. Boston fans just get to win everything.

Honourable Mentions: Matt Duffy, Michael Brantley

Brant: Gerrit Cole

No, Gerrit Cole wasn’t terrible last season. But the move from Pittsburgh to Houston seemed to breathe some new life into the 28 year old. Cole dropped his ERA by nearly 1.5, while adding almost 100 more strikeouts to the mix. Not bad for the 2-3 starter on a ridiculous Astros Rotation.

Honourable Mention: Matt Duffy

Jake: Matt Duffy

Matt Duffy suffered one of the most devastating injuries in sports, injuring his achilles, and ultimately still won the full time job at 3rd base with some fairly impressive numbers in major categories.

Honourable mentions : David Price, Michael Brantley

Mauro: Michael Brantley

I thought he was done for after two straight years with injuries. A solid .309/.364/.468 line does the trick for me.

Honourable Mentions: Matt Duffy, David Price

Nick: Matt Duffy

Matt Duffy turned it around like no one expected. He turned out to be a highly productive bargain, not much pop but a .294 average and 22 doubles is nice from a guy who spent the last year and a half in the minors.

Honourable Mentions: Nathan Eovaldi, Michael Brantley

NL Comeback Player of the Year

Ameer: Matt Kemp

From salary dump to All-Star, no one thought that this comeback was possible.

Brant: Matt Kemp

Matt Kemp almost looked like the should-be-MVP Matt Kemp of 2011 in the first half of the year. While he didn’t qute hold on to that pace, Kemp still put up great numbers for the season, batting .290 for the first time since 2012, tacking on 21 HRs and 85 RBIs.

Honourable Mentions: Bryce Harper, Javy Baez

Jake: Matt Kemp

This is an easier choice because most people didn’t think Matt Kemp would be in the league much longer. Now he is an all star, something no one could’ve predicted that at the age of 34.

Honourable mention : Miles Mikolas

Mauro: Matt Kemp

I thought he fell off the face of the earth two years ago. Solid performance all around for the 34 year-old.

Nick: Miles Mikolas

Hadn’t played in the majors since 2014, and Mikolas had been playing in Japan. He turned that around and burst onto the scene in St.Louis with an 18-4 record this year and an impressive 2.83 ERA. Matt Kemp had a great year, but Mikolas is a far bigger Cinderella story in my eyes.

Honourable Mention: Matt Kemp

AL Cy Young

Ameer: Blake Snell

Snell’s emergence this year made it possible for the Tampa Bay Rays to finally deal their All-Star ace Chris Archer this July. Snell stepped into the vacant hole and has not looked back since. Now that he is in Archer’s role, let it commence trade rumors about him getting moved every offseason and trade deadline.

Honourable mentions: Chris Sale, Trevor Bauer

Brant: Blake Snell

There isn’t much question here, Trevor Bauer wasn’t as good, Chris Sale got hurt, and nobody else is even close. Snell wins.

Honourable mentions: Chris Sale, Trevor Bauer

Jake: Blake Snell

21-5 is hard to argue with especially with a very low ERA. No one is even close to Snell to make this a competition.

Honourable Mentions : Trevor Bauer, Chris Sale

Mauro: Blake Snell

Led the American League in wins and ERA on a Tampa Bay Rays team that really had no expectations going into the season.

Honourable Mentions: Trevor Bauer, Justin Verlander

Nick: Blake Snell

Snell was may be the most under appreciated man in baseball this year. 21-5 with a 1.89 ERA on a team nobody expected to make any noise. His initial all star snub was infuriating, and I’ll feel the same if he loses this award to Chris Sale. Also, I think it would be awesome to see Treinen win as a reliever, but a few hiccups this year probably ruined any chance of that.

Honourable Mentions: Blake Treinen, Trevor Bauer

NL Cy Young

Ameer: Jacob Degrom

He led all pitchers in Wins Above Replacement (WAR), he was the best pitcher all year, it's not his fault he plays for the New York Mets and can’t get wins.

Brant: Jacob Degrom

Wins don’t matter! If anyone doesn’t vote for Degrom based on that, they’re wrong, and they should no longer have the right to vote. For God sakes, the poor guy had nine starts in which he went 6+, allowing one run or less, and came out without the win.

Honourable Mentions: Aaron Nola, Max Scherzer

Jake: Jacob Degrom

The only reason this wouldn’t be completely unanimous is the lack of run support Degrom received all year, resulting in less wins than he really deserves.

Honourable mentions: Max scherzer, Aaron Nola

Mauro: Jacob DeGrom

He was gross all year long. His ERA was 0.67 better than the next best pitcher in the National League. The Mets team owes him big time if this award somehow slips past him this year.

Honourable Mentions: Max Scherzer, Aaron Nola

Nick: Jacob DeGrom

I don’t care that he didn’t win, that is because the Mets are garbage. He was the

best pitcher in baseball this year, no question. Put him at the front of the rotation on a team with a decent offense, and DeGrom is the most talked about player in baseball this past season.

Honourable Mentions: Max Scherzer & Aaron Nola


Ameer: Mookie Betts

Highest WAR this year belonged to Mookie Betts, yes he even beat out Mike Trout. He was the best player on the best team this year, awards are often narrative based, so here’s the winner.

Honourable Mentions: Mike Trout, Jose Ramirez, JD Martinez

Brant: Blake Snell

I already know I’m gonna be wrong with this one, but I don’t think Mookie Betts can be considered the “most” valuable player to a team that has a lineup, and a rotation like the Red Sox. If the team doesn’t have Betts, they still make the playoffs, and, given his postseason production, they probably still win the World Series. Snell, on the other hand was the only inkling of an all star on a Rays team that won 90 games. He nearly carried that team into the playoff picture.

Honourable Mentions: Khris Davis, Mookie Betts, JD Martinez

Jake: Mookie Betts

It’s hard to argue a case against Betts. Best player on the team that wins it all is usually a strong candidate and add in his WAR and batting average then it becomes very tough for him not to win the award.

Honourable mentions : Mike Trout, Blake Snell

Mauro: Mookie Betts

Led the American League in batting average and Wins Above Replacement (WAR). Great season altogether from him and the Red Sox.

Honourable Mentions: JD Martinez, Mike Trout

Nick: Mookie Betts

Mike Trout is still the superior player, but Betts has the stronger year, and the fact he was the key cog on the 108 win Red Sox says how valuable he was. Impressive year all-in-all, with a .346/.438./640 slash line, Betts is the favourite.

Honourable Mentions: Jose Ramirez, Mike Trout


Ameer: Christian Yelich

Just falling shy of the triple crown, Yelich showed baseball how good of a player he was once he left the black hole that is the Miami Marlins. Yelich’s season reminds me of the year Josh Donaldson was traded to the Blue Jays, and how even though they had All-Stars around him, he was able to take over games and carry their squad.

Honourable Mentions: Jacob DeGrom, Javier Baez

Brant: Christian Yelich

Ask me this question in mid-August and I would’ve put up a good case for Baez; but, Yelich turned into Barry Bonds for a month and basically ran away with this one for me.

Honourable Mentions: Javy Baez, Matt Carpenter

Jake: Christian Yelich

I like Jacob Degrom a lot , but the lack of run support ruins his case considerably. Yelich had a crazy offensive year and it only seemed to get better as the season went on .

Honourable mention : Jacob Degrom, Javy Baez

Mauro: Jacob DeGrom

I know I'm wrong and that I should be writing a piece about Christian Yelich but DeGrom needs some more love.

Honourable Mentions: Javier Baez, Christian Yelich

Nick: Christian Yelich

Yelich is the favourite and he should be. An insane offensive year, and it leaves many wondering why more teams didn’t pursue him when the Marlins went through their fire sale. He had some help from the pen and Lorenzo Cain and Jesus Aguilar, but Yelich basically carried the Brew Crew to the playoffs. Seriously though, if DeGrom was on a team that could score ANY runs at all, he maybe walks away with this award.

Honourable Mentions: Javier Baez, Jacob DeGrom

And there you have it, our 2018 MLB award winners. Disagree with any of our picks? Let us know in the comments below.

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