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Koelble-ation to measure baseball's best

September 27, 2005|by TIM KOELBLE

Here we go down the final stretch with the final week to major league baseball.s regular season.

With it comes the voting for all the awards that you will eventually read about once the postseason is completed.

The Baseball Writers Association of America is responsible for the awards and they must sumbit their votes before regular season ends Sunday.

It.s my guess most will wait as long as possible to get their vote in.

I don.t have to worry about voting, but if I did, here.s who I would choose:

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER

My American League choice is David Ortiz of Boston.

Sure, he.s a designated hitter, but "Big Pappy" has been the big man in Beantown this year. I think he.s even been more of an MVP to the Red Sox than Manny (whenever I feel like hustling) Ramirez.

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Of course, the battle will be against Alex Rodriguez of the Yankees. The winner probably won.t be decided until this weekend.s series between Boston and New York is finished. And, because he plays in New York, Rodriguez will probably get it.

My National League choice is Andruw Jones of Atlanta.

This should be a unanimous choice and one of three postseason awards the Braves claim.

He has been the one constant throughout the entire season on a team that was completely decimated with injuries.

CY YOUNG AWARD

My American League choice is Mariano Rivera of New York.

If you base it on wins, then Bartolo Colon gets it, but he couldn.t even get past Tampa Bay Sunday night. Some will make a case for Rivera as the AL MVP. I can.t go that far, but I wouldn.t be at all surprised with him winning this category.

My National League choice is Chris Carpenter of St. Louis.

This won.t be a unanimous choice. Carpenter has won 21 games in his best season ever and is among the leaders in earned run average. The challenge comes from Florida.s Dontrelle Willis, a 22-game winner. And anyone that thinks Roger Clemens should be in the mix, well ...

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

My American League choice is Robinson Cano of New York.

There are several outstanding rookies - Jonny Gomes of Tampa Bay, Nick Swisher of Oakland and so on - but I think Cano gave the Yankees something at the top of the order they were missing with Bernie Williams playing like he was already retired. He.s close to .300 batting, and hits to all fields and with some power.

Meanwhile, Cleveland.s Grady Sizemore won.t get recognition that he truely deserves in this category.

My National League choice is Jeff Francoeur of Atlanta.

He made a huge splash when the Braves needed to plug holes everywhere, taking over right field. Many of his hits helped Atlanta to victories. His arm has help preserve many victories. Aside from Jones, he probably was Atlanta.s most impressive player in July and August.

MANAGER OF THE YEAR

My American League choice is Eric Wedge of Cleveland.

Who else did you think I would pick?

Seriously though, go back to April when the Indians started 9-14, couldn.t hit a lick through May and look at where they are at now. Ozzie Guillen and Ken Macha will get consideration but I don.t think this is close.

My National League choice is Bobby Cox of Atlanta.

Where many voters will probably lean toward Tony LaRussa because of the Cardinals. best record in baseball, it should be Cox. He twirled the magic wand through hard times and got the Braves into their customary NL East position.

One last note, let me add my vote as a fan for Cleveland's Bob Wickman as the AL Comeback Player of the Year.




Tim Koelble is a staff writer for The Morning Herald. His column appears every other Tuesday. He can be reached at 301-733-5131, ext. 2311 or by e-mail at: koelble@herald-mail.com

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