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The Worst Of

Major League Baseball

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Everth Cabrera. Image by Djh5 and used under a Creative Commons license.
As Many Prepare To Nominate Their Picks For The Standard Post-Season Laurels, We Pull Away From The Pack And Identify The Leading Contenders For Least Valuable Player, Not Cy Young, And Shouldn’t Have Been A Rookie Of The Year


By Wayne Schutsky
Modern Times Magazine

Sept. 23, 2014 — The Major League Baseball season is coming to an end, so it’s time for prognosticators and pundits to start making predictions about who they think will win the various awards given out by the various award givers.

But, who needs another one of those.

Between Mike Trout (AL MVP) and Clayton Kershaw (NL Cy Young) and Jose Abreu (AL Rookie of the Year), most of the races are all locked up. That’s why I’ve chosen to pick out the worst the league has to offer. To show you the ying to the aforementioned player’s yang. The player’s who probably shouldn’t be in MLB at all.

Least Valuable Player
There are a few contenders for this spot, Billy Butler is one that comes to mind, but Everth Cabrera takes the cake because of the way he’s hurt his team on and off of the field.

He was having a great year for the Padres in 2013, before being suspended for 50 games because of PED use. It appears that his strong season relied heavily on the juice, because Cabrera posted a dismal line this year before succumbing to injury. He still showed a little speed on the basepaths, but not nearly enough to offset his lack of production at the plate.

Cabrera’s batting average dropped steeply and his sub-.300 on-base percentage is laughable. If that wasn’t enough, Cabrera was recently arrested for driving under the influence of marijuana. It was a dismal cherry on top of an awful season and a half for Cabrera and the Padres.

The Definitely Not Cy Young Award
After a dismal end to his career in Minnesota in 2011, Joe Nathan rebounded nicely with the Rangers over the past two years. In fact, his 1.39 ERA and 43 saves last season were some of the best numbers of his career. That’s why the Tigers didn’t look all that crazy when the team signed him to a 2-year, $20-million contract before the season.

That contract doesn’t look all that friendly to the team these days, though. That’s because Nathan has struggled in his return to the AL Central. The Tigers are still sticking with him, though. That could cost them during this stretch run as they’re trying to fight off the upstart Royals. Every win counts, after all.

He’s still got 33 saves, but his ERA is the worst in a season where he’s appeared in over 20 games.

Shouldn’t Have Been a Rookie This Year
Jackie Bradley Jr. shouldn’t have been a rookie this year, so it should surprise no one that he did very little with his first cup of coffee in the big leagues. He’s obviously a tremendous talent, who already possesses plus defensive skills, but his offense is not ready for the big leagues, yet.

That’s why he was originally beat out for a roster spot by the surgically glued together Grady Sizemore. He only got an invitation back to the big leagues when Shane Victorino went down with an injury. He stayed around until August because the Red Sox got rid of Sizemore.

A competitive team never would have kept Bradley on the roster that long. But, the Red Sox were out of contention a long time ago. With another year or so of seasoning in the minors, his speed and on base skills could have earned him a Rookie of the Year award. But, his service this year means Bradley won’t be a rookie next time he gets a chance with the big club.

Wayne Schutsky is a senior contributor to Modern Times Magazine.
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