2010 MLB Regular Season Recap Part 1: Award Winners
With the conclusion of the 2010 Baseball season last night, we hand out hardware to the best of the best from the season that was in the first part of our 2010 MLB Season wrap-up.
American League MVP: Josh Hamilton, Texas Rangers OF
- 2010 Stat Line: .359 AVG, 32 HR, 100 RBI, 95 Runs, 8 SB
- Impact Card: 1999 Topps Traded Autographs Josh Hamilton
Despite missing the majority of September with an injury, Hamilton wins the 2010 American League MVP fairly easily. The comeback story of the 2008 MLB Season led the resurgent Rangers to the playoffs with a lethal bat and well rounded all-round game. When healthy, Hamilton can hit with anyone in the Majors, even Albert Pujols.
American League Rookie of the Year: Austin Jackson, Detroit Tigers OF
- 2010 Stat Line: .293 AVG, 4 HR, 103 Runs, 41 RBI, 27 SB
- Impact Card: 2008 Bowman Chrome Prospects Austin Jackson Auto
The center piece of the off-season Curtis Granderson trade, Jackson led all rookies in hits, runs, stolen bases, and played Gold Glove defense to boot, in the process proving himself to be far more than yet another Yankees' paper prospect.
American League Cy Young: Felix Hernandez, Seattle Mariners SP
- 2010 Stat Line: 13-12, 2.27 ERA, 232 K's
- Impact Card: 2004 Bowman Chrome Felix Hernandez Auto
In one of the toughest calls in recent memory, King Felix barely edges C.C. Sabathia and David Price for the American League Cy Young. Bottom line, the best pitcher in the American League in 2010 was Felix Hernandez and the fact that the Mariners were Baseball's worst offense doesn't change that. Hernandez led Major League Baseball in both ERA and Strike Outs during the 2010 season.
American League Manager of the Year:Ron Gardenhire, Minnesota Twins
- 2010 Stat Line: 94-68 (AL Central Title)
- Impact Card: 1982 Donruss Ron Gardenhire RC
After finishing 2nd five times during his managerial career, Twins' manager Ron Gardenhire finally receives his just do as one of the best managers in baseball. Since taking over for Tom Kelly in 2002, Gardenhire has won 803 games and 6 division titles. It's no coincidence that the Twins compete every season, overcome major injuries to star players, have the best clubhouse in the game, and are the most fundamentally sound club in baseball.
National League MVP:Joey Votto, Cincinnati Reds 1B
- 2010 Stat Line: .324 AVG, 37 HR, 113 RBI, 106 Runs, 16 SB
- Impact Card: 2004 Bowman Signs of the Future Joey Votto Auto
Votto emerged as the face of a new era of Reds baseball in 2010, going punch for punch with the games best hitter, Albert Pujols. On top of edging Pujols for the National League Central title, the Reds' throw-back slugger will also edge the prolific Cardinals 1st Baseman for the National League MVP.
National League Rookie of the Year:Jason Heyward, Atlanta Braves OF
- 2010 Stat Line: .277 AVG, 18 HR, 72 RBI, 83 RUNS, 11 SB
- Impact Card: 2007 Bowman Sterling Prospects Jason Heyward Auto
While he may not have put up the stat line most had hoped, no rookie had a greater impact on the league in 2010 than the J-Hey kid. Heyward rejuvenated a franchise, a city, and made a legendary manager's final season one to remember. Heyward's early season late inning heroics, advanced plate approach, cannon right field arm, impact on the Braves lineup, and jaw dropping skill set will be just enough to edge the Giants' Buster Posey for NL ROY.
National League CY Young: Roy Halladay, Philadelphia Phillies SP
- 2010 Stat Line: 21-10, 2.44 ERA, 219 K's, 9 CG
- Impact Card: 1997 Bowman Certified Blue Ink Autographs Roy Halladay
Halladay's 2010 season was a mirror image of the old school hurler's career, a pitcher here and there briefly outshined Halladay with otherworldly stuff in 2010, but in the end, Halladay was the last man standing as usual, proving there's no better work horse in baseball.
National League Manager of the Year: Dusty Baker, Cincinnati Reds
- 2010 Stat Line: 91-71 (NL Central Title)
- Impact Card: 1971 Topps Baker/Baylor/Paciorek RC
Leading the Reds to their first division title since 1995 was impressive, even more impressive was the fashion in which Baker led the Reds to the top of NL Central. After the big brawl with the Cardinals, many teams would have submitted to the perennial NL Central champs, instead the Reds used it as a motivation on their way to winning the NL Central with ease.