Posted by: Karlo Berkovich
Some TV talking head — actually a newspaper guy trying (awkwardly) to be a TV talking head — suggested the other day that David Ortiz should win the American League MVP award for 2006. An award, this gent suggested, Ortiz should have won last year.
No. No. No. Ortiz — a designated hitter — as MVP does not compute.
Why? Because he's half the player New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter is. You can cite stats all you want and Ortiz is leading the league in homers and RBIs and second in runs scored. Jeter is second in batting average and seventh in runs scored.
The difference? Jeter plays defence — very very well.
Ortiz rarely does. I don't care how much offence a DH provides. The beauty of baseball comes — or should come, as in the National League — from the fact players have to wield both bats and gloves.
DH's are one-trick ponies. Half players who face half the injury risks, among other issues like fatigue factors, of those who have to take the field. So a DH does not deserve to be MVP. Case closed.