Daily Archives: July 11th, 2012

2012 MLB All-Star Game: Melky Cabrera homers his way to an MVP

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a sports statistics blog published daily that focuses on stats that go beyond the numbers.

Melky Cabrera

Former Royal player Melky Cabrera wins the 2012 All-Star MVP in Kansas City (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

San Francisco Giants outfielder Melky Cabrera was selected as the MVP of the 2012 All-Star Game last night. Cabrera went two-for-three with a two-run home run in the fourth inning in the National League’s 8-0 win over the American League.

Cabrera became the sixth Giants player to win an All-Star Game MVP, but the first since 1973. He joins Bobby Bonds (1973), Willie McCovey (1969), Willie Mays (1968), Juan Marichal (1965) and Mays (1963).

The Giants sixth All-Star Game MVP now puts San Francisco in a tie with the Baltimore Orioles for most MVPs by team. Following are the teams that have had multiple MVP winners in All-Star Game history.

MVP Awards, Team(s)

6: Baltimore, San Francisco

5: L.A. Dodgers, Cincinnati

4: Boston

3: Texas, L.A. Angels, Montreal

2: Atlanta, Seattle

Cabrera is also the 22nd outfielder to win the MVP honor, most in the game’s history. Following are the positions that have won the most All-Star Game MVPs since the award was instituted in 1962. (Also noted is the last position player to win the honor.)

Outfielders: 22 (2012: Melky Cabrera)

Shortstops: 7 (2006: Michael Young)

Catchers: 6 (2010: Brain McCann)

Pitchers: 6 (1999: Pedro Martinez)

First Basemen: 5 (2011: Prince Fielder)

Second Basemen: 3 (1998: Roberto Alomar)

Third Basemen: 3 (1975: Bill Madlock)

Speaking of MVP awards, did you know that since 1982 (the last 30 MLB seasons), seven players who won the season-ending MVP in their respective league did not play in the All-Star Game that season? The last player to “accomplish” this rare feat was in 2007 when Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins was selected as the National League MVP yet he was not a member of the N.L. All-Star team. The Mets Jose Reyes was selected as the starting shortstop in fan balloting, and Brewers shortstop J.J. Hardy was the reserve SS on the team.

Following are the seven league MVPs since 1982 who won the MVP honor in the year in which they did not make the league All-Star team.

2007: Jimmy Rollins (NL)

2006: Justin Morneau (AL)

1999: Chipper Jones (NL)

1996: Juan Gonzalez (AL)

1991: Terry Pendleton (NL)

1989: Robin Yount (AL)

1988: Kirk Gibson (NL)

If you look at the AL and NL Cy Young Award winners over the past 30 seasons, we see that 12 Cy Young Award winners did not make the All-Star team in the year that won the top pitcher honor. Last pitcher to “accomplish” this: In 2010 Seattle’s Felix Hernandez was the AL Cy Young Award winner. He was not selected to the AL All-Star team that season.

One final note: Hitting a home run in the All-Star Game is a pretty good way to get consideration for the game’s MVP Award. Since the MVP Award began in ’62, 30 of the 52 MVPs hit a home run in the game. Of the last 24 MVP awarded, 18 of those players ht a home run in the game.

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