GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

November 16, 2012

Crunch Time


Gloucester Daily Times

---- — First time

in a century

The 2012 season was a monumentally poor season for the Red Sox, and Thursday’s MVP vote puts into perspective just how poor the season was.

For the first time since 1911 no Red Sox player received a single vote for American League MVP. The Baseball Writers Association of America votes for the top 10 players in the American League on MVP ballots and not one Boston player was thought to be amongst the top 10 players in the AL for the first time in a century.

The fact that a Sox player has been on the ballot every year for the last 100 years is a surprise, but the fact that no player got a vote this season is not a surprise. One would be hard pressed to think of a Red Sox player that did not have a disappointing 2012 season.

Rightful winner

Speaking of the MVP race, the BBWAA deserves kudos for recognizing the right player in Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera. It’s been tough listening to baseball stat geeks gush over Angel’s outfielder Mike Trout “Win above replacement” rating and other obscure stats. But the facts remain, Cabrera was the first player in 45 years to win the triple crown and had a far superior September to Trout, a month where Detroit locked up a playoff spot.

Dickey amazes

On the baseball surface, R.A. Dickey winning the National League Cy Young Award this year is amazing enough, since he is 38-years-old, was cut two years ago and is the first knuckleballer to win the award.

But that is just the beginning of his truly miraculous story. His autobiography, “Wherever I Wind Up” tells the brutally honest story of the horrific abuse he suffered as a child, and how it has influenced the rest of his life and baseball career.

It is a challenging read, due to its content, but a worthwhile and fascinating book.

Good

for Bobby V

There’s a lot you can say about the performance of Bobby Valentine in his one rough season as Red Sox manager, but credit the guy for honoring his commitments.

Last Thursday, Valentine made his scheduled speaking appearance in the esteemed Salem State Speakers Series. It would have been easy for Valentine to bail on the appearance — as political commentator Anderson Cooper proved when he canceled twice earlier this year.

-Compiled by Nick Curcuru

and David Willis