Our BCB Ballots In The Brewers Blogosphere Awards

Earlier this week the Milwaukee chapter of the BBWAA unveiled their Brewer awards for the 2011 season. If you missed them, here they are:

Team MVP: Ryan Braun
Most Valuable Pitcher: John Axford
Best Newcomer: Nyjer Morgan
Unsung Hero: Jonathan Lucroy
Good Guy: LaTroy Hawkins

For the second straight year, Brewer writers from around the web have taken part in a similar exercise. Jaymes Langrehr of The Brewers Bar organizes the Brewer Blogosphere Awards each year, and collects ballots from writers around the internet for the same awards. He posted the results last night, and here they are:

Team MVP: Ryan Braun
Best Pitcher: Yovani Gallardo
Best Newcomer: Zack Greinke
Unsung Hero: Jonathan Lucroy
Good Guy: Craig Counsell and Casey McGehee

This year, four BCB writers took part in the voting: Nicole Haase, Jordan, Noah and I. Our ballots and comments can be seen below, with votes listed for first, second and third place:

Brewer MVP:

Voter 1st 2nd 3rd
Nicole Ryan Braun Prince Fielder John Axford
Jordan Ryan Braun Prince Fielder Rickie Weeks
Noah Ryan Braun Prince Fielder Zack Greinke
Kyle Ryan Braun Prince Fielder Yovani Gallardo

Jordan said: "I'm not going to penalize Rickie too much for his missed time, and he provided some solid value on defense so I have him just ahead of Hart here. I think 1 and 2 are pretty much a given. Braun put up 8 WAR and 6 WPA, no one touches that."

Kyle said: "As demonstrated by the voting here and the near-unanimous vote for Braun for #1 in our MVBrewer voting, it's pretty hard to make a strong case against him for the #1 spot. What I find most interesting is that the four of us had identical ballots to that point, but all chose someone different for the #3 spot."

Nicole said: "I thought the first two places were pretty clear, but I wasn't sure who to vote for in the third position. One of the biggest assets for the Brewers this season was being able to shorten the game to 7 or so innings based on the performance of the back-end of the bullpen and to me, Axford was the clear stand-out."

Most Valuable Pitcher:

Voter 1st 2nd 3rd
Nicole John Axford Yovani Gallardo Francisco Rodriguez
Jordan Yovani Gallardo John Axford Zack Greinke
Noah Zack Greinke Yovani Gallardo John Axford
Kyle Yovani Gallardo Zack Greinke John Axford

Jordan said: "Because we're looking back on the year, I'd prefer to reward the starter whose results were the best over the course of the year. Greinke may have been better at the things he can control but I think there's no question Gallardo had the best season of the starting pitchers. Axford led all the pitchers with a 4.29 WPA, which better captures the impact he had on this team than his 1.9 WAR, which doesn't give him any credit for pitching in plenty of high-leverage situations and coming through just about every time."

Kyle said: "What John Axford was able to do was incredible this season, but the Brewer rotation and other members of the bullpen deserve a lot of the credit for keeping him in enough games to get nearly 50 save opportunities."

Nicole said: "I stand by my previous statement about how the back-end of the bullpen shortened the game, which is why I have both Axford and K-Rod in my rankings. Greinke was good, but not great and I spent the whole season hoping for more from him, which is why I didn't put him in my top three."

Top Newcomer:

Voter 1st 2nd 3rd
Nicole Zack Greinke Nyjer Morgan Jerry Hairston Jr
Jordan Zack Greinke Shaun Marcum Nyjer Morgan
Noah Zack Greinke Francisco Rodriguez Shaun Marcum
Kyle Nyjer Morgan Zack Greinke Shaun Marcum

Jordan said: "These three were the main reason this club made the playoffs, and the 2010 club couldn't finish .500. Morgan had a huge year but I'm going to highlight the 2 and 3 starting pitchers over the platoon center fielder."

Kyle said: "Maybe this is just me buying into the Tony Plush hype, but I think having him in the lineup relatively consistently really solidified a questionable position for this team and his personality and energy really seemed to fit."

Nicole said: "Maybe my vote for Hairston should have stayed only in Unsung Hero, but I just felt he provided timely hits and a stability at third that was desperately needed down the stretch. I don't think he's gotten near enough credit. And I figure if I'm highlighting what Hairston did near the end of the season, I can't discount that part of the season for Marcum, so that's why they shake out that way for me."

Unsung Hero:

Voter 1st 2nd 3rd
Nicole Jerry Hairston Jr Yovani Gallardo Carlos Gomez
Jordan Carlos Gomez LaTroy Hawkins Chris Narveson
Noah Jonathan Lucroy Carlos Gomez Takashi Saito
Kyle Chris Narveson Marco Estrada Jonathan Lucroy

Jordan said: "Gomez might have had one of the best defensive seasons in Brewer history had he been the everyday centerfielder. He only had a .307 wOBA but was a roughly average player overall, something that has a lot of value, and was a big reason why center field was the third most productive position on the hitting/defense side this year. Hawkins had a 2.76 FIP and 1.48 WPA, and was a big part of why this bullpen was so good, even though he was often the fourth option form the pen. Narveson had a 4.06 FIP in 165 innings-- that's a number 3 starter for plenty of major league teams."

Kyle said: "Lost in some of the excitement for the Brewers' star hitters and top of the rotation was the fact that they also got consistently good outings from their #5 and 6 starters. The Brewers' lack of organizational depth really created a possibility for disaster if Narveson or Estrada hadn't been able to carry the load, but they handled their roles nicely and kept it from becoming an issue."

Nicole said: "Maybe putting Gallardo in there is too obvious, but I think he really got lost in the shuffle and got over-shadowed a lot. Because we expected him to be good and consistent, we often don't give him credit for the things that he did. His NLDS Game 1 will get forgotten in the shuffle of the rest of the postseason, which is unfortunate. I thought about Narveson and Estrada, but couldn't choose between the two, so I basically gave them fourth place."

Good Guy:

Voter 1st 2nd 3rd
Nicole John Axford Craig Counsell George Kottaras
Jordan Craig Counsell Nyjer Morgan Tim Dillard
Noah Casey McGehee Craig Counsell Prince Fielder
Kyle John Axford Nyjer Morgan Ryan Braun

Jordan said: "I don't know any of these guys, this was a random one."

Kyle said: "This is a case where the BBWAA writers probably have a better feel, because they're around these guys every day. I took Axford and Morgan for their willingness to interact with and entertain the fans on Twitter, and Ryan Braun for being good enough to provide a ton of production."

Nicole said: "All Canadians are nice people, right?"

So what do you think? Where did we hit or miss here?

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