Verlander wins AL Rookie of the Year


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
AL/NL Rookie of the Year

DETROIT -- Even in the midst of the disappointment of a World Series defeat, Justin Verlander admitted after his season-ending loss that he couldn't have asked for a better rookie season. Two weeks later, with a little time and a lot of a hardware, it's a little clearer to him now.
In what was categorized as the year of the rookie pitcher in the American League, Verlander was the one still pitching at the end -- the very end, in fact, by starting the final game of the World Series. He didn't get a championship, but by winning Monday's AL Rookie of the Year award from the Baseball Writers' Association of America, he has a clean sweep of his league's rookie honors.

MIAMI -- To fully appreciate Hanley Ramirez's rookie season, some historical perspective is needed.
The gifted 22-year-old Marlins shortstop posted some first-year numbers that rival some of the game's all-time greats.

Consider, Ramirez is the first National League rookie to post 110-plus runs and 50-plus stolen bases. And he is the second Major League rookie since 1900 with 115-plus runs scored and 50-plus stolen bases. Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki accomplished the feat in 2001.

Ramirez joined the legendary Ernie Banks (19 in 1954) as the second rookie in NL history to log 17-plus homers while playing 100-plus games at shortstop. And he is the fifth MLB player since 1900 to collect 45-plus doubles and have 50-plus stolen bases. That exclusive club is occupied by Hall of Famers: Ty Cobb (47/83 in 1911), Tris Speaker (53/52 in 1912) and Lou Brock (46/62 in 1968). Rounding out the list is multiple All-Star Craig Biggio (51/50 in 1998).

Such lofty standards haven't gone unnoticed as Ramirez on Monday was tabbed the Jackie Robinson National League Rookie of the Year winner by the Baseball Writers Association of America.

In the closest NL vote since 1980, Ramirez was named the winner over Washington third baseman Ryan Zimmerman. In all, three of the top four choices were Marlins. Florida All-Star second baseman Dan Uggla was third, and right-handed pitcher Josh Johnson was fourth.