Saturday, July 2, 2011

MVP, So Far

The Mets have never had a player win the Most Valuable Player Award.   Never.  Not in 50 years.  A few came close.  The most deserving was probably Darryl Strawberry, who came in second in the MVP voting in 1988, when he hit 39 homers, 101 RBIs, but split the New York vote with Kevin McReynolds, allowing the less deserving Kirk Gibson (25 homers, 76 RBIs) to win.  Mike Piazza had a great year in 2000, hitting .324 with 38 homers and 113 RBIs, but he came in third behind Jeff Kent and Barry Bonds. In 1969, Tom Seaver barely lost to Willie McCovey, and in 1986, Gary Carter finished third behind Mike Schmidt and Glenn Davis. 

We are only halfway through the year and a lot can happen (and with the Mets it usually does) but Jose Reyes is having a special year like no other non-pitching Met has ever had.  I'm not sure there has been a ballplayer since Barry Bonds during his 73-homer year ten years ago who has been consistently dominant for as long as Jose Reyes has been this season.

Reyes leads the league in batting average by over twenty points, and is first in hits, triples, and runs scored.  He is second in doubles and stolen bases. He has had more than one hit in more than half his games.  His play at shortstop has been stellar.  And statistics aside, he is the most exciting player in the game.  He makes spectacular plays on defense and is electric on offense.  He is a true catalyst for a team that would be nowhere close to .500 without him, and he plays with passion and intensity that make him a joy to watch.

If he continues playing anywhere near the same level in the second half of the season, Jose Reyes should be the National League's MVP.  I only hope he will still be wearing a Met uniform.

[Related post:  Keep Jose and Keep Hope Alive]


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