2016 MLB Season Award Predictions
These days in the MLB, the talent is overwhelming. From pure power hitters, to pure defensive studs, to pitchers striking batters out with ease and breezing through games, the skill levels are hard to narrow down to who is the best. However, each year, the BBWAA, or the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, must vote and discuss together the best players in the league to receive the prestigious annual awards. Names like Clayton Kershaw, Miguel Cabrera, Buster Posey, Mike Trout, and so many more have become award recipient regulars. Now with more talent stemming from the dugouts of teams across the MLB, this year, we will see some new names winning these coveted awards at the end of this year.
2016 NL MVP Award Prediction: Nolan Arenado.
“You are crazy,” are the words I will hear from readers of my bold statement, and with names like Bryce Harper, Jake Arrieta, Anthony Rizzo, Paul Goldschmidt, Andrew Mccutchen, and Clayton Kershaw still in play, choosing Arenado over these studs is far fetched. However, let’s break down the prediction and Arenado’s overall potential. Nolan Arenado came onto the scene 2013 where he finished 7th in rookie of the year voting, with 10 home runs, 52 rbi, a .267 batting average and a .405 slugging average, but in 133 games which is nothing special. The following year, he showed more pop hammering 18 home runs with a .500 slugging average and a .287 batting average, with 61 rbi in 22 less games. At this point, he was showing he should be put on the player watch list, and if you kept him on your list, most likely you enjoyed a hell of a season the next year. In 2015, in 157 games, Nolan Arenado let loose 42 dingers with an eye-popping 130 rbi, his homers were tied for most in the National League, and his rbi total was most in the MLB. Yet, he only finished 8th in NL MVP voting, a disappointing result for the slugger. However, he has not taken that into effect and in 41 games in 2016, he has already drilled 14 home runs and 34 rbi with a .314 batting average. He is easily on pace to eclipse his total from last year in home runs and I think he will, as well a sustaining a batting average around .300 with 100+ rbi, pending other players performances such as Harper, Arenado should run away with the NL MVP award in 2016.
2016 AL MVP Award Prediction: Manny Machado
Machado had hype coming in 2010 when he was the 3rd overall pick in the first round of the amatuer draft, and his MLB debut came in 2012 when he was only 19 years old and played in just 51 games, hitting 7 home runs and 26 rbi with a respectable .262 batting average, a solid rookie year but the hype was still there. In his next season, in 156 games, Machado showed the worth of his hype whopping a smashing 51 doubles, with 14 home runs, 71 rbi, a .283 batting average and a .432 slugging average. The home runs weren’t as high as expected, but the power was undeniable, and at only 20 years old, the sky was the limit. However, the following year Machado was plagued with injuries and posted lackluster numbers in 82 games. Then, in 2015, Machado delivered the best season of his young career, hitting 35 home runs, 86 rbi, a surprising 20 steals to go along with 30 doubles and a .286 batting average. The beast known as Manny Machado finally emerged and to start 2016, in just 40 games he already has 12 home runs, 26 rbi and a .323 batting average, all while already hitting a ridiculous 16 doubles. It is looking like in 2016, Machado will be reaching new heights, and these heights might propel him to his first AL MVP Award.
NL Cy Young Award Prediction: Clayton Kershaw
Clayton Kershaw is arguably the best pitcher in baseball, year after year, and this year should be no different. If it were not for Jake Arrieta’s historical run at the end of 2015, Kershaw most likely would have took home another Nl Cy Young Award, or possibly Zack Greinke who posted a 1.66 era for the season. However he fell short posting a 16-7 record with a 2.13 era and whopping 301 strikeouts. He won the Cy Young award in 2014, along with MVP, in 2013 and in 2011. Finishing in second in voting in 2012 and third last year. Meaning in since 2011, he has been a top three vote for the Nl Cy Young award every single year. This guy is a once in a lifetime pitcher and will easily make another run at the award as he is already 6-1 with a 1.67 era and 88 strikeouts in just 70 innings, enjoy the show.
AL Cy Young Award Prediction: Chris Sale
Chris Sale is an absolute ace. Since 2013, he has posted 200+ strikeouts every season, with last year posting a career high 274 strikeouts. However, his entire career he has played in the White Sox and they have not been to the best to Sale in terms of overall run support, resulting in Sale’s average wins to loses record. However with a career 2.82 era and finishing in the top six of Al Cy Young voting since 2012, he is just a 20 win season away from his first award. Now in 2016, he is seemingly taking advantage of an overall better White Sox team. In 9 games started, Sale is 9-0 with a miniscule 1.58 era and 62 strikeouts with a 0.72 WHIP. He has already thrown 3 complete game and 1 shutout, a perfect game would probably end the votings pretty early. With all jokes aside however, Sale is the clear front runner for the award in 2016.
NL Rookie of the Year Prediction: Corey Seager
Seager has been hyped up for a couple years now and in 2016, is finally a full time starter for the Dodgers, and in the first quarter of the season, he has been solid. With a .288 average, 7 home runs, and 21 rbi, he is well on his way to 25 home runs and about 90 rbi. With a post .300 batting average, stat lines like this are in MVP discussion, but Seager won’t be in those discussions just yet. With other names such as Trevor Story and Aledmys Diaz in NL Roy discussions, it is going to be a race but Seager is the best all around rookie shortstop right now.
AL Rookie of the Year Prediction: Nomar Mazara
Only receiving playing and a call up due to the injury to Shin-Soo Choo in April, Mazara became a full time starter for the Rangers and has been solid ever since his call up. In 35 games, he has a .299 batting average with 5 home runs and 13 rbi. While this kid won’t be a superstar, he will be a star outfielder for years to come and even when Choo returns, he will most likely keep his good, pending any dramatic slump. But Mazara can flat out hit and will be a staple in the Rangers lineup for many years, being one, if not the top prospect for them, and now showing why. While only Byung-Ho Park of the Twins has been Mazara’s only competition for the award, he should run away with it fairly easily.