Nick Wass/Associated Press
Southern California reigned supreme in the Major League Baseball awards voting with the announcement that Cody Bellinger of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels were named the MVPs of their respective leagues.
In the National League, Bellinger earned 19 first-place votes and 362 total points to beat out Christian Yelich of the Milwaukee Brewers (10 first-place votes, 317 points) and Anthony Rendon of the Washington Nationals (one first-place vote, 242 points).
Since moving to Los Angeles after the 1957 season, the Dodgers have produced six NL MVP winners. Bellinger joins a group that includes Maury Wills (1962), Sandy Koufax (1963), Steve Garvey (1974), Kirk Gibson (1988) and Clayton Kershaw (2014).
Bellinger is also the 24th player in MLB history to win Rookie of the Year and MVP awards. The 24-year-old took home NL Rookie of the Year in 2017. He’s the first player to join that group since Kris Bryant won NL Rookie of the Year in 2015 and NL MVP in 2016.
Bellinger and Yelich, who won the award last year, finished the regular season in a dead heat with 7.8 FanGraphs wins above replacement. Yelich likely would have come out ahead in that battle if he didn’t miss the final 18 games due to a fractured kneecap suffered on Sept. 10.
The Brewers star topped Bellinger in batting average (.329 to .305), on-base percentage (.429 to .406) and slugging percentage (.671 to .629). The Dodgers slugger had the advantage in homers (47 to 44) and RBI (115 to 97).
Bellinger was also an outstanding defensive player in 2019. He won his first career Gold Glove as a right fielder, leading all qualified players at the position with 19 defensive runs saved.
The AL MVP race became more interesting after a late-season injury to the perceived favorite. Trout missed the final 19 games for the Angels after he had surgery on his right foot. His absence opened the door for Houston Astros third baseman Alex Bregman to have the spotlight all to himself in the midst of a pennant race.
Voters gave the edge to Trout with 17 first-place votes and 355 total points. Bregman received the remaining 13 first-place votes and 335 total points, with Oakland Athletics shortstop Marcus Semien rounding out the top three with 228 total points.
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1⃣ Trout 17 13 – – – – – – – –
2⃣ Bregman 13 17 – – – – – – – –
3⃣ Semien – – 22 6 – 2 – – – –
4⃣ LeMahieu – – 6 10 7 1 2 1 – 2
5⃣ Bogaerts – – 1 6 7 7 2 2 3 –
6⃣ Chapman – – – 1 – 3 10 5 5 2
7⃣ Springer – – – 1 2 1 3 7 5 2
Full voting breakdown: https://t.co/fMngLjsYU6 https://t.co/iREQvHeZQT
Bregman had a strong case and would have been a deserving MVP in most years. The Astros All-Star was right on Trout’s heels with 8.5 FanGraphs wins above replacement and hit a robust .296/.423/.592 with 41 homers and 112 RBI for a team that led MLB with 107 wins.
Since his first full season in 2012, Trout has established himself as the best player of this generation. The 28-year-old now has three MVP awards, tied with five other players for most in AL history.
After leading the league with 184 strikeouts in 2014, the Angels superstar has transformed himself into a hitter with no weaknesses:
Sports Info Solutions @SportsInfo_SIS
[email protected] CF Mike Trout was again atop the list of the best players in baseball in 2019
What made him great?
Just take a look at his numbers vs all the different pitch types
He produces at a well above-average level https://t.co/jHLGOCRqu4
The only thing missing from Trout’s resume is success in October. He’s only played in the postseason once, in 2014, when the Kansas City Royals swept the Angels in the ALDS.
The Angels could make a big splash this offseason to help out their three-time MVP. There will be plenty of time to sort all of that out. In the meantime, Trout and his team will celebrate this accomplishment.