â†µIn a shock to no one, Albert Pujols was named the MVP of the National League with a unanimous vote. (Voting breakdown here.) Here's how good Pujols is -- he finished the 2009 season batting .327 with 47 home runs, 135 runs batted in, 124 runs scored and a 1.101 OPS, and none of those haughty statistics were the best of his career in any category. Quite simply, Pujols is the most dominant hitter of his generation, and as far as we know the Cardinals first baseman is totally clean, putting him on the short list of the most productive hitters of all time. â†µâ†µ
â†µPujols led the 2009 season in every comparative statistic including VORP (98.3), WAR (8.4) and WARP1 (12.1). In fact, nobody was really close to him in any of those rankings. He was just outright dominant this season. â†µâ†µ
â†µSo, back to the most productive hitters of all time. Pujols tied Sammy Sosa for the most 100+ RBI seasons in the National League with nine. Pujols has 1,112 RBI in his nine-year career and has just two seasons with an OPS below 1.000. His least productive season overall was 2007, when he finished with .327/99R/103RBI/32HR and still finished ninth in the MVP voting. In fact, his worst hitting season was his second in the league in 2002 when he hit just .314 with a .955 OPS, and he finished second in the MVP voting to Barry Bonds. â†µâ†µ
â†µPujols is one of only three players to ever win the MVP three times before the age of 30, with the other two being Stan Musial and Bonds. Not only does Pujols now have three MVP awards, including back-to-back trophies, but he has three second-place finishes as well, with two of those coming to Bonds. Again, if Pujols continues his career and can stay relatively healthy (and scandal-free), he'll be the most productive hitter of all time. â†µâ†µ
â†µThere really aren't any complaints with the rest of the list, as Marlins' shortstop Hanley Ramirez finished second, Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard finished third and Prince Fielder of the Brewers finished fourth. Troy Tulowizki, Andre Ethier and Pablo Sandoval represented the NL West in fifth, sixth and seventh, respectively. â†µâ†µ
â†µAnd just to prove that the BBWAA voters don't care about the second half of their ballots, Giants reliever Jeremy Affeldt got one 10th place vote. That's one more vote than he had saves this season and one fewer vote than he had wins. Jeremy, you owe one baseball writer a sandwich. â†µâ†µ
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