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November 9, 2010

Internet Baseball Awards

National League

by Greg Spira

For full results to this year's IBA voting, look here. For AL Wrap-up, look here.

It's that time of year when we announce the winners of the 19th annual Internet Baseball Awards. More than 1,000 baseball fans from cyberspace participated in this effort to honor those players and managers whose performances in 2010 were most deserving. Today we'll announce the winners of the National League voting, which featured the closest Rookie of the Year vote ever and a Pitcher of the Year vote dominated by a single pitcher. The point system for the balloting was as follows:

  • Player of the Year ballots: 14 points for first-place votes, nine points for second-place votes, eight points for third-place votes, etc., down to one point for a 10th-place vote.
  • Pitcher of the Year ballots: 10 points for first-place votes, seven points for second-place votes, five points for third-place votes, three points for fourth-place, and one point for fifth-place votes. This point system we use differs from the BBWAA point system for historical reasons.
  • Rookie of the Year ballots: 10 points for first-place votes, seven points for second-place votes, five points for third-place votes, three points for fourth-place, and one point for fifth-place votes. This is a longer ballot than the BBWAA uses and (obviously) a different point system.
  • Manager of the Year ballots: Five points for first-place votes, three points for second-place votes, and one point for third-place votes.

Player of the Year

The 2010 Internet National League Player of the Year award balloting turned out to be a duel of first basemen—the Cincinnati RedsJoey Votto and the St. Louis CardinalsAlbert Pujols. In the end, Votto ended up on top after he led the league in OBP, SLG, and OPS and helped lead the Reds to their first NL Central title since 1995. Votto got 60 percent of the first-place place votes, more than twice as many as Pujols.

Usually, all Pujols has to do to win the NL Player of the Year is to be himself, but that wasn’t quite enough this year. Still, Pujols did receive 28 percent of the first-place votes after again posting a phenomenal season both offensively and defensively. It is certainly possible that, at this point, some of the electorate is suffering from Pujols fatigue.

Votto’s first-place finish followed a 19th-place finish in 2009 and a 55th-place finish in 2008. The first baseman also finished second in the 2008 Internet NL Rookie of the year balloting. Pujols, on the other hand, already has four Internet NL Player of the Year Awards on his resume and has finished among the top four vote-getters in nine of his 10 major-league seasons (he finished seventh in 2007).

Only four other players received at least 10 first-place votes: Roy Halladay (43), Carlos Gonzalez (28), Troy Tulowitzki (12), and Adrian Gonzalez (12).

Before finishing in third place in the Internet NL Player of the Year voting this season, Carlos Gonzalez had never appeared on a single Player of the Year ballot. However, he did finish 23rd in the 2008 Internet AL Rookie of the Year balloting.

Halladay, in fourth place, was the highest-finishing pitcher. Halladay had finished in the top 15 four times, but never higher than 10th.

Tulowitzki finished fifth for the second consecutive year; he also finished in the top 20 (17th) in 2007. After finishing 35th in 2006, 24th in 2007, 21st in 2008, and ninth in 2009, Adrian Gonzalez continued his rise by finishing sixth in this year’s voting.

Giants catcher Buster Posey, 10th place, was the highest-finishing rookie. Only two players from losing teams—Ryan Zimmerman (seventh) and Hanley Ramirez (14th)—finished in the top 15.

Pitcher of the Year

Halladay won the 2010 Internet NL Pitcher of the Year in overwhelming fashion. He received 91 percent of first-place votes and easily outdistanced his competition. With his victory, he becomes the fourth pitcher—after Roger Clemens, Randy Johnson, and Pedro Martinez—to win an Internet Pitcher of the Year in both major leagues. Halladay was the winner back in the 2003 Internet AL Pitcher of the Year voting and has now finished among the top six in balloting seven times.

The only two pitchers other than Halladay to get at least 10 first-place votes were Adam Wainwright and Ubaldo Jimenez. The 2010 season marked Wainwright’s second straight contending campaign; he finished third in the voting last year. Jimenez also enjoyed his second straight strong season, as the hard-throwing right-hander finished eighth in last year’s balloting. No other Rockies pitcher has ever made it into the top 10.

Josh Johnson’s fourth-place finish improves upon his 10th-place finish in 2009. Tim Lincecum, who won this award in 2008 and 2009, finished fifth.

Tim Hudson’s sixth-place finish marks his sixth time in the top 10, while Roy Oswalt’s eighth-place finish marks his seventh appearance in the top eight. The highest-finishing relief pitcher was Brian Wilson (13th).

Rookie of the Year

In the closest vote in Internet Rookie of the Year voting history, Posey edged Braves right fielder Jason Heyward to win the 2010 award. The voters chose Posey by a nose despite the fact that Heyward amassed 180 plate appearances than Posey and performed at a similar offensive level even though he is 20 months younger. Posey’s defensive prowess at catcher, one of the most difficult positions to play, swung the vote just enough.

Posey received 421 first-place votes and was named on 845 ballots, while Heyward received 370 first-place votes and appeared on 835 ballots. The only other player to reach double digits in first-place votes was Cardinals left-hander Jaime Garcia. Shortstop Starlin Castro, a 20-year-old, finished fourth after quietly establishing himself as a fixture in the Cubs' lineup, while uber-prospect Stephen Strasburg finished fifth after throwing the most publicized 68 innings of the season.

Manager of the Year

The Padres may have just missed the postseason, but Bud Black won the 2010 Internet NL Manager of the Year award by a comfortable margin. Black, whose best previous showing in his four years at the helm came in 2007 when he finished in sixth place, captured 37 percent of the first-place ballots, two-thirds more than any his competitors. Bobby Cox, who has won the NL Internet Manager of the Year award a record three previous times, finished second after leading the Braves to the playoffs once again in the last year of his managerial career. Bruce Bochy finished third after leading the Giants to the NL West championship (and beyond); this marked the third time in his career that he finished in the top three (he finished second in 1997 and third in 2006).

26 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

BP Comment Quick Links

dianagram

Is there a link to the results of the votes?

Nov 09, 2010 05:27 AM
rating: 6
 
John Collins
(110)

I second Diana's request. We've always gotten to see a full ballot before.

Nov 09, 2010 05:56 AM
rating: 2
 
jrmayne

Thirded. I always look forward to the big chart, and no big chart is saddening.

Nov 09, 2010 07:05 AM
rating: 0
 
jrmayne

Or maybe the charts will come tomorrow with the AL...

Nov 09, 2010 07:56 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Ben Lindbergh
BP staff

We've added a link to the voting results and the AL Wrap-up at the top of the page.

Nov 10, 2010 14:40 PM
 
MattZ

Ryan Zimmerman 7th? Internet, I am dissapoint.

Nov 09, 2010 05:56 AM
rating: 0
 
laughingman

He plays for the Nationals.

Nov 09, 2010 06:13 AM
rating: 0
 
jtrichey

Why did Zimmerman deserve higher? You have to have total trust in the defensive metrics to give him that big a boost. His bat was in a large grouping of the 5th-15th best in the league. I don't have that kind of faith in the defensive metrics yet to give Zimmerman more support, especially for a last place team. He was 9th on my ballot.

Nov 09, 2010 15:38 PM
rating: 0
 
MattZ

I have some faith in the metrics, some faith in my eyes, and I think that a player's individual value doesn't change based on the team he plays for.

Nov 10, 2010 07:44 AM
rating: 0
 
tweicheld

RE Strasburg - how about the most publicized 68 innings in RECORDED HISTORY?

Nov 09, 2010 09:17 AM
rating: -1
 
BP staff member Dave Pease
BP staff
(2)

Full voting results will come with the AL wrapup.

Nov 09, 2010 09:45 AM
 
John Collins
(110)

Full results were *not* included with the AL results.

Nov 10, 2010 07:50 AM
rating: 0
 
juiced

All correct choices except Pujols should be MVP over Votto. The wisdom of the crowds is looking fairly wise today

Nov 09, 2010 09:53 AM
rating: 1
 
Rowen Bell

That's hardly clear.

Nov 09, 2010 10:22 AM
rating: 0
 
juiced

Pujols is one win over replacement better than Votto. Close enough to snooker the voters, far enough to not snooker sabermetricians. Tie base should go to the established str, and this isn't tie base

Nov 09, 2010 13:20 PM
rating: -1
 
RedsManRick

Depends on which WAR framework you look at. Fangraphs has Votto at 7.4 and Pujols at 7.3. B-R has them at 6.2 and 7.2 respectively. Suffice it to say they are not sufficiently different as such to make a clear case for either on the stats alone.

Nov 09, 2010 18:35 PM
rating: 0
 
surfdent48

Pujols should be over Votto and Heyward over Posey

Nov 09, 2010 10:57 AM
rating: -3
 
Tim Lowell

Meanwhile, Jeter just got another Gold Glove. At the risk of sounding like Sarah Palin, way to go, Lamestream Media!

Thank you for being there, BP. You make life more sane.

Nov 09, 2010 13:00 PM
rating: 4
 
saucyjack88

juiced, are you saying the tie go to the established player? Why is that fair? Votto has the talent and minor league pedigree to show this is likely NOT a one-year-wonder thing. Don't you think, if we're looking for "tie breakers", Cincinnati winning the division should be the most logical?

Nov 09, 2010 13:37 PM
rating: 2
 
andymac

Votto's team making the post-season is just as arbitrary as choosing based on vetereniness (yep, made it up). You are essentially making the decision based on who had the better teammates. A better choice if you feel like you need a tie-breaker would be something like WPA.

Nov 10, 2010 02:02 AM
rating: 0
 
BrettG

I am wondering Heyward did in the NL MVP voting. If Posey edged Heyward in the ROY voting, I would expect to see Heyward near Posey (10th) in the MVP voting.

Nov 09, 2010 14:30 PM
rating: 0
 
lesmash

Votto over Pujols is the correct choice; both had statistically terrific seasons, but one led his team to the NL Central crown and one did not, so that breaks the 'tie' in my eyes. Winning counts on my scorecard.

Nov 09, 2010 17:38 PM
rating: -2
 
lesmash

I have to think Posey benefitted from all the playoff coverage and WS ring. People can't help but be swayed by that. Had voting occurred only in, say, the first 72 hours after the end of the regular season I think Heyward wins by a close margin instead of the other way around.

Jeter winning the GG is wayyyyyy bad. I'm in the Alexei Ramirez camp for this year.

Nov 09, 2010 17:41 PM
rating: -1
 
John Collins
(110)

Didn't the voting conclude well before Posey got the WS ring?

Nov 09, 2010 22:09 PM
rating: 2
 
gspira
(18)

The voting finished before the WS. And Posey was ahead from very early on in the voting. He got a tiny lead early on and maintained that tiny lead - it actually shrank a bit - as the playoffs went on.

Nov 10, 2010 12:46 PM
rating: 2
 
onegameref

GM of the Year - Sabean - for trading Molina to open up the job for Posey. It made all the difference in the world. The pickups of Burrell and Ross certainly paid dividends too in their run.

Nov 10, 2010 18:35 PM
rating: 0
 
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