Giants

Buster Posey honored with NL MVP Award

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Buster Posey honored with NL MVP Award

SAN FRANCISCO Buster Poseys trophy case already included a Silver Slugger, a Comeback Player of the Year honor, the prestigious Hank Aaron Award for offensive excellence and a claim check to collect his second World Series ring.To nobodys surprise, he added a centerpiece trophy on Thursday. Posey was named the National Leagues Most Valuable Player by the Baseball Writers Association of America, whose voters made him the clear and overwhelming selection.Posey received 27 of a possible 32 first-place votes for a landslide victory with 422 points. Ryan Braun finished in second place with 285 points and three first-place votes. Ryan Braun finished third with 245 points but did not receive any first-place votes. Yadier Molina received the final two first-place votes and finished in fourth place with 241 points.Posey became the first catcher to win the NL award since Johnny Bench in 1972, and just the second NL backstop since Roy Campanella took the award in 1951, 53 in 1955. Its elite company for Posey, who already made history during the regular season when he hit .336 to lead the majors becoming the first NL catcher to win a batting crown since Ernie Lombardi in 1942.Posey also led the NL with a .408 on-base percentage, hit 24 home runs and finished with 104 RBIs the first Giant to drive in 100 runs since Barry Bonds in 2004. Not coincidentally, Bonds won the last of his seven MVP awards that season the last Giant to do so before Posey.Posey joins Bonds, Jeff Kent, Kevin Mitchell, Willie McCovey, Willie Mays, Carl Hubbell and Larry Doyle as the only players to win a league MVP award in a Giants uniform. Posey is the first MVP to be drafted and developed by the organization since McCovey in 1959.Ballots were due before the playoffs, but voters recognized what Posey meant to the Giants as they persevered through the loss of closer Brian Wilson to elbow surgery and the Aug. 15 suspension of Melky Cabrera, who was leading the majors in hits and runs when his positive test for exogenous testosterone was made public.Posey only cranked up his production in the second half. He hit .385 with a .456 on-base percentage and .646 slugging percentage in 71 games after the All-Star break; he had 23 doubles, 14 homers and 60 RBIs after the break as well.This guy is an incredible talent, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said in the moments after his team won the World Series in Detroit. His makeup is off the chart.He's, to me, the MVP, no question. We know how he carried us all year with the bat. But I think as important as atbat is what he did behind the plate in postseason and helped getting this pitching on track.He's the one putting the fingers down and calling those games back there, and this pitching did an unbelievable job against such a tough lineup.He did all of this one year after targeted hit at home plate tore three ankle ligaments, fractured his fibula and left him unable to walk for four months while he recuperated from two surgeries. Bochy paced Posey through the season with occasional starts at first base, but he still ended up exceeded expectations for innings and games caught.He's special, Bochy said. For him to come back off that injury shows you not only how tough he is, but what a special talent this guy is.

José Altuve is the first since Buster Posey to do this in a season

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AP

José Altuve is the first since Buster Posey to do this in a season

The Astros and Giants had seemingly opposite seasons in 2017. While the Astros won their first World Series title in franchise history, the Giants put together a historically bad season with a 64-98 record. 

Of all the Astros, José Altuve enjoyed the greatest season of them all. And one Giant can relate to the 5-foot-6 slugger. 

Altuve became just the eighth player in Major League Baseball history to win a batting title, MVP and World Series all in the same year. The last to do so was Buster Posey in 2012, the second of his three titles with the Giants.

In 2012, Posey hit .336 to win the batting title. He then received 422 voting points to edge out Ryan Braun (285) to win the National League MVP. 

Altuve hit 10 points higher than Posey at .346 to win the 2017 batting title. But, Altuve received less voting points (405) than Posey to beat rookie Aaron Judge (279). 

Awards season reminds us how far Giants fell in 2017

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USATSI

Awards season reminds us how far Giants fell in 2017

SAN FRANCISCO — It was revealed Thursday night that Giancarlo Stanton is this year’s National League Most Valuable Player. The rest of the MVP ballot shows why the Giants are chasing Stanton so hard this offseason. 

Led by Stanton, 22 different players were listed on NL MVP ballots, which have 10 spots. Two of the top five finishers — Nolan Arenado and Charlie Blackmon — were Rockies. Four different Diamondbacks got votes, led by third-place finisher Paul Goldschmidt. The Dodgers had five players listed on ballots, including rookie Cody Bellinger, who arrived a couple of days after Christian Arroyo and finished ninth in MVP voting. 

The Giants? They didn't have a single player receive an MVP vote, continuing a theme during awards season. 

The team built around pitching did not have any players listed on the five-person Cy Young Award ballots (full disclosure: I had a vote). There were no Rookie of the Year candidates, either, and Bruce Bochy was out of the Manager of the Year running sometime in early May. The 2017 season was the first since 2007 in which the Giants didn’t have a single player listed for any of the four major awards voted on by the Baseball Writers Association of America. 

The lack of award-season love is a reminder of how deep the hole is, but it’s also a sign of how much help the Giants need from their stars in order to dig out of this hole. This isn’t as simple as fixing the center field defense and upgrading the bullpen. 

Buster Posey had a good season, but his 12 homers, 67 RBI, .861 OPS and 4.3 WAR (ranked 17th in the NL) didn’t get any love at the end of a 98-loss year. Posey had been listed on at least one MVP ballot every season since 2012, when he won the award. This is the first year since 2007 that the Giants did not have a player listed on an MVP ballot. 

The organization has had similar success in the Cy Young balloting, with Tim Lincecum winning twice and Madison Bumgarner finishing in the top 10 in each of the previous four seasons. A dirt bike accident cost Bumgarner any shot of getting votes this year, and also likely cost him a third Silver Slugger Award in a season that started with two homers on Opening Day. Bumgarner and Johnny Cueto finished fourth and sixth in the Cy Young voting last season, but Cueto had a similarly forgettable season.