My Voting For The United Cardinal Blogger Awards

Each November, the United Cardinal Bloggers vote for awards on that year’s Cardinals season, as well as the best of our peers. Here’s a look at my choices for 2014.

united-cardinal-bloggers-lgCardinals Team Awards
Player of the Year

Nominees: Matt Carpenter, Matt Holliday, Jhonny Peralta

My choice: Jhonny Peralta. He did what he was acquired to do, which was increase the offense by the shortstop, and even led the team in homers with 21 for good measure. Plus he was very good defensively, with the fifth-best defensive WAR in the National League at 2.6.

Pitcher of the Year

Nominees: Lance Lynn, Pat Neshek, Adam Wainwright

My choice: Lance Lynn. While a case could be made easily for either of the other two (and especially Adam Wainwright), my pick is for Lynn because of the complete season he put together. No post-All Star slump, as he had a 2.22 ERA after the break compared to 3.14 before, plus he had a 3-0 record and 1.99 ERA in August to lead the team when Wainwright struggled through a “dead arm” period. Lynn also had career bests in ERA at 2.74, WHIP at 1.26 and bWAR at 3.7.

Game of the Year

Nominees: May 20 (Adam Wainwright one-hitter), May 31 (Oscar Taveras debut), NLDS Game One, NLDS Game Four, NLCS Game Two

My choice: NLDS Game Four. Beating Clayton Kershaw once in October, after the tremendous regular season that would earn him both the NL Cy Young and MVP awards, was terrific. Doing it again, to clinch the division series, with Matt Adams doing all the damage with a three-run seventh inning homer? Incredible. Just take a look at that homer again, and the reactions from Kershaw as well as the Cardinals players, the crowd (go, Mrs. DeWitt!) and of course Adams himself. Continue reading

Our Choices for the 2013 Cardinal Blogger Awards

Every November the United Cardinal Bloggers vote for the best of the season just completed as well as the best of our peers. Here are our ballots for 2013.

20130831-161018.jpgCardinals Team Awards
Position Player of the Year
Chris: Yadier Molina

Yes, Matt Carpenter had an incredible, and unexpected, breakout season and earned a well-deserved fourth place finish in National League MVP voting. But Yadi is Yadi — on offense, on defense, as a leader. He’s intrinsic to the Cardinals success and one of the biggest reasons the 2013 team made it to Game Six of the World Series.

Tara: Matt Carpenter

This might seem hypocritical of me, considering the excessive lobbying I did for Yadier Molina for MVP, but it’s hard to beat the transformation Carpenter made this year. Not only did he learn a new position — and fare exceptionally well in it — but he also took over the leadoff role, carried much of the offensive weight, and went from a “probably not an every day guy” to a fourth place finish in the MVP voting. I’ve always seen something special in Matt, but this year exceeded even my lofty expectations!

Pitcher of the Year
Chris: Adam Wainwright

With a starter plus two eighth-inning-guys-turned-closers, it’s not necessarily an equal comparison to choose among these three options. But, in the end, results speak for themselves. Nineteen wins (regardless of your opinion on them, that’s not a total many pitchers reach in a season), 2.94 ERA, 219 strikeouts with only 35 walks, five complete games, two shutouts and 6.2 WAR speak pretty loudly — as does a complete game in the decisive Game Five of the NLDS after a dominant Game One start.

Tara: Trevor Rosenthal

There was nothing more impressive than how Rosey handled the postseason. His first appearance in the NLDS, I thought he was going to pass out on the mound! But (after that magical talk from Molina), he did more than just settle. He absolutely¬†owned¬†the 9th inning. The confidence, the accuracy, the power … he was phenomenal. It wasn’t just the posteason, though that’s most distinct in my memory. He started the season as a key piece of a bullpen in flux. Not knowing what his role was, or what it might morph into, he steadily improved, and, for the most part, consistently executed. What a year he had!

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