Now that the All Star break is over, it’s time to go over the first half of the season and predict who will be the MVPs of the 2013 season.
For the National League, I would have to go with Yadier Molina. Molina is on pace to earn another NL batting title thanks to his .341 average and .386 on-base percentage. He’s third in the NL in doubles at 27 (tied for sixth overall). His arm is also coming up big, he’s predicted at the end of the season to throw out 40% (or greater) of base stealers. That would make it the eighth time in his career he has reached that number.
Another fact completely separate from stats is his presence of the St Louis Cardinals team. He is a leader from the time he steps on the diamond to the time in the locker room and beyond. A valuable player is not one who just leads the league in stats, but leads his team and earns the respect of his teammates.
Now the MVP for the American League is a little trickier to predict. Primarily because it is already Cabrera vs Davis. Both Miguel Cabrera and Chris Davis’ first half of the season were impressive. Davis hit 37 home runs before the break to Cabrera’s 30. Cabrera holds a .365 average, while Davis hits .315. Cabrera has two more RBIs than Davis at 95. Cabrera has a higher OBP, but a lower slugging percentage. Cabrera has stepped up with runners on base, hitting .391 with 21 home runs and hits .448 with runners in scoring position. Davis’ numbers with runners on is also impressive, but not as great as Cabrera. He hits .365 with runners on and 15 homers and .372 with runners in scoring position.
I do believe Cabrera holds the edge, however. While their stats might be so evenly split, Cabrera proved last year he is more than a first half player, winning the Triple Crown. Davis now has to step up and prove his power and nickname “Crush” Davis can live up during the second half of the season. Cabrera is also a more well-rounded hitter. Around Baltimore, Davis is known as the “guy who can only hit home runs.” Cabrera is so much more than that. Cabrera has 24 more hits than Davis at the break and has 46 less strikeouts than Davis.
While Davis has been on a record setting pace with his home runs, the fact that Cabrera is more well-rounded at the plate, which will earn him the title as MVP.