“SIX STATS…” is a bonus feature of Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ and is published every Friday.
With all the excitement about the Packers unbeaten season and the Wisconsin Badgers football team’s journey to the postseason, haven’t had an appropriate tribute to Ryan Braun‘s National League MVP honor. Here’s a look at some of the stats behind the honor.
1. Braun and Prince Fielder became the first teammates since 2000 to finish in the top 3 in the National League MVP balloting (Jeff Kent and Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants finished 1-2 in the 2000 NL MVP Award.) Twenty-three sets of teammates have finished in the Top 3 of A.L. or N.L. MVP balloting since 1970. The last American League duo was New York’s Mark Teixeira and Derek Jeter who finished 2-3 in 2009.
2. This was the first year in Major League history that the two winners of the MVP awards were former Rookie of the Year recipients. Braun was N.L. ROY in 2007; Justin Verlander was A.L. ROY in 2006.
3. As noted above, Braun was N.L. ROY in 2007. The A.L. ROY that year was Boston’s Dustin Pedroia. Braun won the N.L. MVP this year, Pedroia was A.L. MVP in 2008. This is the first time in baseball history that two Rookie of the Years from the same year have both gone on to win an MVP award.
4. Braun became the 22nd player in baseball history to win a Rookie of the Year award and a league MVP honor. Of the 22 players who have accomplished this feat, nine are currently in baseball’s Hall of Fame: Jackie Robinson, Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Orlando Cepeda, Billy Williams, Rod Carew, Johnny Bench, Andre Dawson and Cal Ripken, Jr. Of those 22 players, 14 of them won their MVP award within five years of winning their ROY honor. Both Braun and Verlander joined that group this year.
5. Since 2007 when Braun began his major league career, he has received votes for the league MVP each of the five years of his five-year MLB career. The only other players to have received MVP votes in each of the past five years are: Ryan Howard, Albert Pujols, Miguel Cabrera and Adrian Gonzalez.
6. Braun became the fourth Brewers player to finish in the Top 5 of the league MVP in two or more seasons. Can you name the other three players? Braun finished in the Top 5 of the league MVP in 2008 and 2011; Fielder finished in the Top 5 in 2007, 2009 and 2011; Robin Yount in 1982 and 1989 (he won the award both years) and Cecil Cooper, who finished in the Top 5 in 1980, 1982 and 1983.