October 3, 2010

2010 Pirates Awards

Not everyone on the Pirates was terrible this season. Before we turn, mercifully, to the 2011 Pirates, and because everyone cares what some random asshole thinks, let's give out some awards.

Most Valuable Player
Andrew McCutchen

McCutchen answered any questions remaining after his rookie season, hitting .286/.365/.449 while scoring 94 runs. That's 16% of the team's runs. He got 56 extra base hits, stole 33 bases, and drew 70 walks. He showed good range in center field with a flair for the spectacular play. He proved his durability, playing 154 games and starting 152 despite dealing with several injuries in the second half. He also overcame a summer slump to post the best month of the season in September/October when he hit .324/.411/.519. He drastically cut down on strikeouts as the year progressed. It was a really solid age 23 season from a star who is a breakout candidate for 2011.
Honorable Mention: Neil Walker

Most Valuable Pitcher
Evan Meek

Meek came out of nowhere to become a bona fide relief ace. He was unhittable in the first half, maintaining an ERA below 1.00 as late as July 9. Incredibly, national commentators claimed Meek shouldn't be in the All-Star Game when he entered the game with a 1.11 ERA. He had a solid second half that only looked unimpressive when compared to his first half, finishing 5-4 with a 2.14 ERA in 80 innings as batters hit only .185 against him for the season. Evan also was perfect in four ninth inning save opportunities.
Honorable Mention: James McDonald

Best Rookie
Neil Walker

Neil started the year not even ranked among Pittsburgh's Top 20 prospects, but he quickly changed that by hitting .321/.392/.560 at Indianapolis to start the season. Promoted to the Pirates in late May, Walker emerged as a legit top of the order line drive hitter with a batting line of .296/.349/.462. Though he had success early in the season as a free swinger, he worked to correct that tendency and ended up drawing 14 of his 34 walks in the season's final 21 games. He showed a good arm, decent range and sound decision making skills despite it being his first year at second base.
Honorable Mention: Pedro Alvarez

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