The fields for the Most Valuable Player in each league for the 2019 season were as wide open as the Cy Young Awards were. All six players had excellent seasons, but there can be one winner in each league and on Thursday evening, MLB wrapped up it’s major awards with the announcement of those winners.
In the American League, the finalists were the Angels’ Mike Trout who will likely be a candidate every year until he retires as he remains one of the best players in all of baseball, Houston’s Alex Bregman who led the league in rWAR at 8.4 for the season (and who was excellent in the postseason as well), and Oakland’s Marcus Semien who started all 162 games, hit 30 homers and 40 doubles, and was among the game’s better shortstops defensively in 2019.
Again, it was a very tough choice, but ultimately Trout took home the honors. Despite the Angels’ struggles, Trout’s strong season was still enough to persuade voters to give him the nod. It is easy to take Trout for granted because he handles his business quietly, but the 2019 season was his 7th season where he has posted more than 8 fWAR in a season. He is also just 28 years old.
For the third time in his career, Mike Trout is your AL MVP. pic.twitter.com/wN0AwBQztl— MLB (@MLB) November 14, 2019
In the National League, the finalists were almost as good as those in the AL. The Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger had a chance to run away with the award after a scorching first half, but even though he cooled off a little bit, he still finished the 2019 season with a 1.035 OPS with 47 home runs on a team that won 106 games. Christian Yelich put together another strong season and could win the award in back to back years as he tied with Bellinger for the NL lead in WAR and put up an insane 1.100 OPS, but he did miss a bunch of time after he fractured his kneecap after fouling a ball off of it. Anthony Rendon’s Nationals just won the World Series and he was a big part of keeping them aloft with a 154 wRC+, a league-leading 126 RBIs, and 7 fWAR.
The win ultimately went to Bellinger. It is hard to argue with giving the nod to a guy that slashed .305/.406/.629, was an excellent defender, and played on one of the regular season’s best teams.
The Most Valuable Player in the NL: Cody Bellinger. pic.twitter.com/4fIAbBbwgV— MLB (@MLB) November 14, 2019
The Braves did have some players finish with some MVP votes although they did not have any finalists for this particular award. Ronald Acuna Jr. finished 5th in the voting behind Ketel Marte and ahead of Nolan Arenado. He received one third place vote and 13 top five votes overall. Freddie Freeman finished 8th including a second place vote while Josh Donaldson finished 11th with no top five votes on any ballot.