Yankees: Making Aaron Judge’s case for MVP

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

With the American League MVP Award being announced on Thursday, here is why Yankees slugger Aaron Judge should be walking away with the accolade.

Now that the World Series has concluded, it is award season in the world of baseball. The Most Valuable Player awards will be announced on Thursday and there is every reason in the world why Yankees slugger, Aaron Judge should be the recipient of the AL honor.

In his 2017 rookie season, Judge put himself on the map with the greatest rookie season in the history of baseball. Yes, you heard that right, the greatest rookie season in MLB history.

In 155 games, Judge slashed .284/.422/.627 with 52 home runs and 114 RBIs, setting the rookie record for home runs in a season as well as being one of the key reasons a “rebuilding” Yankees team made it one game away from a World Series appearance.

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When comparing Judge to his opponent, Jose Altuve, Judge leads in almost every offensive statistical category. The right-fielder finished the regular season with higher ranks in on-base percentage, slugging percentage, runs scored, home runs, walks and runs created.

He also did all of this while being a rookie and playing in the biggest market in the entire sport, New York. In Altuve’s defense, Houston is not considered a “small market”, but by no means does it come close to the bright lights of playing in New York.

The main knock on Judge is that his strikeout numbers are just too high to receive MVP honors. This argument is not valid, as it should not matter how many times a player strikes out if he is putting up numbers like Judge did last season. If you asked any owner in baseball if they would take 50+ home runs in exchange for 200+ strikeouts, they would do it in a heartbeat.

Statistics aside, the case for Judge being awarded MVP goes even further. You have to look into the description of the award to see where I am going with this, “most valuable” player. There was no player more valuable to his team in 2017 than Judge was to the Yankees.

It is difficult to examine this but based on how the season played out, it could be assumed that without Jose Altuve, the Houston Astros are still a playoff team. But without Judge, the Yankees by no means make it as far as they did in 2017.

There is no statistic to examine this, but there should be no denying that Judge was the face of baseball in 2017 and his presence for his team on and off the field makes him invaluable.

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Come Thursday, Judge should be the player who is announced as the American League MVP and it is not even close.