Category Archives: Rookie of the Year

Austin Jackson has been wronged.

photo by Samara Pearlstein

Neftali Feliz is the Rookie of the Year in the American League. In other words, someone who is NOT Austin Jackson is the Rookie of the Year. I know! It’s a wrongness.

I don’t even really want to argue numbers here, although I’m sure you’ll be able to find plenty of that elsewhere on the Internet, as irate Tigers fans fire up their statistically-minded neurons or whatever. Both Feliz and Jackson had very, very good seasons; nobody is going to deny that. And both are rookies. That is 100% of fact.

But Feliz is a closer. A CLOSERRRRRRRRRR. He played in 70 games. Jackson played in 151 games and had 675 plate appearances. Feliz was on the mound for 69.1 innings. Jackson was in the field for 1256.1 innings. LAWD PAWS I CAN’T EVEN. If you have to choose between two very good players, both of whom had very good seasons, wouldn’t you pick the one who had septendecillion more chances to do things for his team? WOULDN’T YOU?

Oh well I guess the Rangers ended up in the playoffs so that makes Feliz’s 70 freaking appearances carry that much more weight. I VOMIT ON HIS 70 APPEARANCES. I SPEW HAIRBALLS UPON HIS 7 PLAYOFF APPEARANCES. Also Feliz pitched in like 20 games in 2009, while Austin Jackson had never played in a big league game before this season. I know that Feliz was technically still a rookie, but AUSTIN JACKSON WAS ROOKIE-ER.

Austin Jackson may not have saved a kitten in the clubhouse– YET, THAT WE KNOW ABOUT– but I think we will all agree that he WOULD save a kitten if there was one nearby that needed saving. As for Neftali Feliz, sure, he has the benefit of being named ‘Neftali’, which is admittedly pretty great, but he would spit upon the distressed kitten and hoist his undeserved Rookie of the Year trophy and walk away while laughing like an evil supervillain. That’s the sort of thing you need to take into consideration.

We all pretty much know that Miggy is going to get screwed out of the MVP award because blah blah blah playoffs blargh blather blather, so I think we were all REALLY HOPING that Austin Jackson would get recognition for being such an amazing child prodigy, but NO. Thanks for NOTHING, people-who-voted-on-this-award. You’re all jerks. May a kitten expectorate in your shoes.

Porcello does not win Rookie of the Year

photo by Samara Pearlstein


FredFred finished third in the RoY voting, behind the winner, Andrew Bailey of the A’s, and Elvis Andrus of the Rangers. Sure, Bailey had a sub-2 ERA, and Elvis Andrus is wicked cute, but did either of them come straight up from single-A because they were desperately needed by the big league club and then live up to that frankly impossible situation and somehow manage to avoid traumatizing themselves for the future by reprising Jeremy Bonderman’s 2003 season? THAT’S RIGHT, I DIDN’T THINK SO.

Sure, Bailey had a WHIP of 0.88, and Andrus is adorable, but did either of them take down a raving Kevin Youkilis and live to tell the tale with hardly a scratch on them? Does either one of them have THE THIRD at the end of his name? YEAH. DIDN’T THINK SO.

Whatever, Rookie of the Year voters. Whatever.

Justin Verlander also failed to be awarded by MLB, coming in third in the Cy Young voting. But the winner this year was Zack Greinke, who was better than everyone in the entire world, so I am not complaining.

On the Hot Stove front (can we call it the Hot Stove yet?), there has been some light chatter between the Tigers and the Mariners, regarding Edwin Jackson and what “sources” are calling “minimum-salary pitching” in exchange. I guess that’s interesting, kind of, but the Mariners may not be able to retain King Felix after 2011 and have shown interest in dudes like John Smoltz (6.35 combined ERA in ’09), so I think they’re just feeling out as much pitching as they possibly can right now.

Justin Verlander wins Emperor of the Land of Awesome

Or, you know, AL Rookie of the Year. Same deal.

Click the image for bigger, natch. And both the source photos were taken by me, for once! A minor miracle. Clickee clickee.

This is all very simple, so far as I can tell. Verlander deserved to win. Verlander won. The other guys were all pretty darn good candidates (Papelbon, Liriano, Johjima, Weaver the second, et. al.), but Justin Verlander played the whole year and played pretty bloody well the whole year. Justice is done, kittens and cupcakes for all, celebrating in the streets, so on and so forth.

I am kind of curious about who gave Nick Markakis his sole first place vote, though. And I’d like to hear the reasoning behind that vote, provided it’s something different from what I think it must be, that being “a whole lot of mushrooms of really, really dubious origin”.

Hooray hooray Justin Verlander AL Rookie of the Year hooray.


Unrelated anecdote time!

I was in Starbucks today, supporting the evil corporation in direct violation of my art student code of conduct. I (naturally enough) had my Red Sox hat on, and the cashier made some little ‘booooo!’ noise upon seeing me. Whatever, I get that sometimes; they’re not really rivals of anyone out here, of course, but another AL team is bound to catch at least some flak. I do my little ‘woe is me you have wounded in my heart’ pantomime and order my sugary caffeinated poison of choice.

“Ha, I’m just kiddin’, I don’t really hate them,” cashierette says. “But man, I’m just glad the Tigers didn’t win it all.”

“Awwww, why not?” I ask. It’s not worth getting into my dual fandoms at the cash register, but she’s taking some time with my money, I’m stuck standing there anyways, so as a Tigers fan, even if she can’t see it, I am of course obliged to respond to this remark. I figure she’ll say she’s from Chicago or St. Louis or New York or something and that will explain that.

“They didn’t deserve it,” she says. I cock my head inquiringly. “They only just got good; they haven’t been good long enough. So they didn’t deserve it. Now, if they’re still good a few years down the road, then they’ll deserve to win.”


I can’t even begin to fathom this logic. I think I gaped a little like a carp and said something intelligent like, “Hey, good teams have to start somewhere,” but I really was sort of blindsided by that FREAKIN’ INSANITY and still am now. I mean… what? A team can’t win a World Series unless they’re some kind of pseudo-dynasty beforehand? To what person does that make sense?
The worst bit?

One of the other baristas immediately agreed with her.

I just took my coffee and sat down at a table far, far away from the cash register, to destroy my hand by doing far too much pointillism and rack my brain for the reasoning that would result in that opinion. I dunno, man. I just don’t know. But I figured I ought to relate it herein, because it’s just that bonkers. I mean, seriously, what?

But yes, Justin Verlander, AL Rookie of the Year. Bears repeating. Hip hip hooray to the max, kids and kittens.