The finalists for the annual Players Choice Awards, which are chosen by the players themselves in conjuction with the Major League Baseball Players Association and Upper Deck, were released today. And guess who is not one of the three finalists for the American League’s Outstanding Pitcher?
That would be Felix Hernandez, as you no doubt guessed from the headline. The players went with Roy Halladay, Zack Greinke and C.C. Sabathia. I don’t think this should be viewed as any kind of omen for the Cy Young Award, which will be announced on Nov. 17. I’m pretty confident that will come down to a two-way race between Greinke and Hernandez.
The only Mariners’ player in play for any award is Russ Branyan, a finalist for AL Comeback Player, along with Toronto’s Aaron Hill and the White Sox’s Scott Podsednik.
The Players Choice Awards will be announced on the Mike and Mike In the Morning radio show on ESPN Radio, two a day starting next Monday. According to the MLBPA, balloting was conducted in September under the supervision of the accounting firm KPMG.
Here are the other finalists:
Player of the Year (regardless of league): Joe Mauer, Albert Pujols, Hanley Ramirez.
Marvin Miller Man of the Year (regardless of league): Curtis Granderson, Torii Hunter, Albert Pujols.
Outstanding Player, American League: Derek Jeter, Joe Mauer, Kendry Morales.
Outstanding Player, National League: Prince Fielder, Albert Pujols, Hanley Ramirez.
Outstanding Pitcher, National League: Chris Carpenter, Tim Lincecum, Adam Wainwright.
Outstanding Rookie, American League: Elvis Andrus, Gordon Beckham, Jeff Niemann.
Outstanding Rookie, National League: Chris Coghlan, Tommy Hanson, J.A. Happ.
Comeback Player, National League: Aaron Boone, Chris Carpenter, Nick Johnson.
There’s only one award I”ll go out on a limb and say is 100 percent certain: Aaron Boone for NL Comeback Player of the Year. Boone underwent open heart surgery in March and was back on the Astros in September for 10 games. He went 0-for-13, but so what? Just the fact he made it back from open-heart surgery should make him a shoo-in.