Early Season MLB Awards

The 2013 April Awards

4/29/13 in MLB   |   Andrew_Ericksen   |   230 respect

April 9, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera (24) hits a three run home run fourth inning against the Toronto Blue Jays at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY SportsThere’s still plenty of baseball to be played, but why not recognize the players that have had the strongest starts to the season?  So without any further ado, I give you the 2013 April Awards:
AL MVP - Miguel Cabrera, 3B, Detroit Tigers
The Tigers have been streaky so far, but are coming off a huge sweep of the Braves thanks in large part to the reigning AL MVP.  Cabrera has picked up right where he left off last season, tied for the AL lead in batting average (.375), 3rd in RBI’s (26) and tied for 5th in runs (18).  Mike Napoli also warrants some consideration here, second in the AL with 27 RBI’s behind Boston’s AL-Best 18-7 record, but Miggy’s all-around game has been more complete so far, propelling the top batting order in the Major Leagues in April.
NL MVP - Justin Upton, OF, Atlanta Braves
Atlanta’s big offseason acquisition has not disappointed.  Leading the majors with 12 home runs while hitting a solid .307, Upton has given new life to the Braves.  At 15-9, Atlanta holds the best record in the NL and if a few other bats can start giving Upton some support, the former 1st overall pick should be set for a monster season.  Bryce Harper comes in a close second for the 13-12 Nationals.
AL Cy Young - Matt Moore, SP, Tampa Bay Rays
Just a ridiculous start to the season for Moore, posting a 1.13 ERA, 0.88 WHIP, and striking out 38 batters in 32 innings while winning all 5 of his starts.  Clay Buchholz has been almost equally unhittable (5-0, 1.19 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, 39 strikeouts in 37.2 innings) but Moore’s edge in Opponent Batting Average (.122 vs. .192) propels him to number one.
Apr 24, 2013; New York, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) pitches against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the first inning of a MLB game at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY SportsNL Cy Young - Matt Harvey, SP, New York Mets
4-0, 1.54 ERA, 0.69 WHIP, .122 Opponent Average, 39 strikeouts in 35 innings.  Yeah, Mets fans may have forgotten about that R.A. Dickey guy already, huh? Harvey’s been absolutely nasty so far this season and even though the Mets may not have enough pieces to make a playoff run this year, they can at least pride themselves in knowing they have one of the game’s top young arm’s at the front of their rotation.
AL Biggest Surprise - Chris Davis, 1B, Baltimore Orioles
Since the AL Rookie Race is a complete no-show so far this season, we’re going with a different award to start the season, and Chris Davis is the AL’s recipient.  Starting off the season with homers in his 4 straight games, Davis has taken the MLB world by storm so far through 2013.  With 33 bombs in 2012, he wasn’t too much of a secret coming into the season, but no one saw him leading the majors in RBI’s (28) and second in homers (9) while hitting at a .349 clip.
NL Biggest Surprise - John Buck, C, New York Mets
In his first year in the Big Apple, Buck has quickly won over the New York faithful.  With 8 home runs and 23 RBI’s in 22 games, Buck’s on pace to shatter his career season bests (20 and 66 in 2010).  Now on his fifth team in as many years, maybe Buck has finally found his home.  And again, it’s looking better Mets fans!
*All stats through Sunday, April 28th
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5/3/13   |   ML31   |   3675 respect

I humbly submit Brandon Crawford as the NL's biggest surprise.  He likely won't keep hitting like he is but this is an April only thing.  So there it is.