This is it. The MVP voting pretty much signifies the end of the season. It’s our final look back at the 2004 season before the Hot Stove League really gets going.
Barry Bonds probably won’t sweep the first place ballots in the National League, but he should. It’s really hard to pick which of the last four seasons were Bond’s best (not too mention the best of all time). He won his second batting title in three years, and set single season records in walks (232), OBP (.609), and OPS (1.422). Throw in 45 homeruns in only 373 at bats, and it makes for another historic season.
The American League is a little less clear. Vladimir Guerrero had a fine season, and now that he’s out from under Barry’s wing in the NL, could walk away with his first MVP. But I’m going to make a pitch for Johan Santana. I normally wouldn’t throw a pitcher into the mix, but let’s take a look.
Forget about the stats for a second. Taking away his final start where he only pitched five innings, the Twins won 19 of Santana’s 21 starts from June 9th forward. The two losses were a 2-0 loss to the Tigers and a 2-1 loss to the White Sox. So better put, Santana put the Twins in a position to win each of those twenty one victories.
I think this will be close one though. I can see four or five players getting first place votes, none of which could go to Santana. I don’t think Johan will even finish in the top five, but he warrants being there.