Red Sox’ Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers recognized in American League MVP voting

Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts finished ninth in 2022 American League Most Valuable Player Award voting, as revealed by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on Thursday night. Third baseman Rafael Devers finished 14th.

Bogaerts received one fourth-place vote, two sixth-place votes, two seventh-place votes, two eighth-place votes, seven ninth-place votes, and five 10th-place votes for a total of 50 points. Devers received one seventh-place vote, one eighth-place vote, and three 10th place votes for a total of 10 points.

Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge, who set a new American League record by hitting 62 home runs this season, received 28 of 30 first-place votes en route to winning his first MVP Award. Last year’s winner, Angels two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani, finished second while Astros designated hitter/outfielder Yordan Alvarez came in third.

Bogaerts, who — like Judge — is now a free agent, won his fifth career Silver Slugger Award earlier this month after batting .307/.377/.456 with 38 doubles, 15 home runs, 73 RBIs, 84 runs scored, eight stolen bases, 57 walks, and 118 strikeouts over 150 games (631 plate appearances) for the Red Sox this season. The 30-year-old finished in a three-way tie with Cleveland’s Andres Gimenez and Houston’s Justin Verlander for the fifth-highest fWAR total (6.1) in the American League, per FanGraphs.

Devers, who is eligible for free agency following the 2023 campaign, slashed .295/.358/.521 with 42 doubles, one triple, 27 home runs, 88 RBIs, 84 runs scored, three stolen bases, 50 walks, and 114 strikeouts across 141 games (614 plate appearances) for Boston this season. The 26-year-old finished in a two-way tie with Cleveland’s Shane Bieber for the 11th-highest fWAR total (4.9) in the junior circuit.

This marks the fifth straight season in which Bogaerts has received MVP votes. Devers, on the other hand, has now gotten MVP votes in three of the last four seasons dating back to 2019.

(Picture of Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox’ Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, and Nathan Eovaldi all recognized in American League MVP voting

A trio of Red Sox teammates were recognized in American League Most Valuable Player Award voting on Thursday night, as revealed by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on MLB Network.

While Angels two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani took home AL MVP honors unanimously, Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers finished 11th, shortstop Xander Bogaerts finished 13th, and right-hander Nathan Eovaldi finished 15th.

Devers finished 11th in voting by receiving one fifth-place vote, two sixth-place votes, one seventh-place vote, and eighth 10th-place votes. In total, the 25-year-old netted himself 28 voting points.

A first-time All-Star in 2021, Devers slashed .279/.352/.538 with 37 doubles, one triple, 38 home runs, 113 RBIs, 101 runs scored, five stolen bases, 62 walks, and 143 strikeouts over 156 games spanning 664 plate appearances.

Bogaerts finished 13th in voting after receiving a pair of ninth-place votes and three 10th-place votes, which translates to seven voting points in total. The 29-year-old Aruban was selected to his third career All-Star Game roster this summer.

Over 144 games in what was his ninth season with the Sox, Bogaerts batted .295/.370/.493 to go along with 34 doubles, one triple, 23 home runs, 79 RBIs, 90 runs scored, five stolen bases, 62 walks, and 113 strikeouts in 603 total trips to the plate.

Both Devers and Bogaerts won their respective first and fourth career Silver Slugger Awards last week.

Eovaldi, on the other hand, just finished fourth in American League Cy Young Award voting on Tuesday and now further solidifies what was a breakout campaign in 2021 after receiving one seventh-place vote in the MVP race.

Like Devers, Eovaldi was named an All-Star for the first time in his career earlier this summer. The 31-year-old righty posted posted a 3.75 ERA and 2.79 FIP with 195 strikeouts and 35 walks across 182 1/3 innings of work. Among qualified American League starters this year, he ranked ninth in strikeout rate (25.5%), first in walk rate (4.6%), first in FIP, third in xFIP (3.48), and first in fWAR (5.6), per FanGraphs.

The last Red Sox player to win American League MVP was Mookie Betts, who did so in 2018.

(Picture of Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers: Winslow Townson/Getty Images)

Red Sox’ Nathan Eovaldi finishes 4th in American League Cy Young voting

Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi finished fourth in American League Cy Young Award voting on Wednesday night, as revealed by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on MLB Network.

Eovaldi, who was not named a finalist for the award last week, appeared on 19 of the 30 ballots while receiving eight third-place votes, six fourth-place votes, and five fifth-place votes.

Blue Jays left-hander ultimately won his first career Cy Young Award on Wednesday by receiving 29 of 30 first-place votes and finishing with 207 total voting points. Yankees right-hander Gerrit Cole finished in second-place after receiving 123 points, White Sox right-hander Lance Lynn finished in third-place after receiving 48 points, Eovaldi finished in fourth-place after receiving 41 points, and White Sox left-hander Carlos Rodon finished in fifth-place after receiving 34 points.

From there, Athletics right-hander and former Red Sox prospect Frankie Montas placed sixth (21 points), Astros right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. placed seventh (14 points), White Sox closer Liam Hendriks placed eighth (10 points), Blue Jays right-hander Jose Berrios placed ninth (8 points), Athletics right-hander Chris Bassit placed 10th (2 points), and White Sox righty Lucas Giolito and Angels closer Raisel Iglesias placed 11th and 12th by receiving one point each.

For Eovaldi, this marks the first time that he has received Cy Young votes of any kind over the course of his 10-year big-league career.

A first-time All-Star in 2021, the 31-year-old stepped up and emerged as Boston’s true ace while Chris Sale was still recovering from Tommy John surgery and Eduardo Rodriguez was struggling to find his rhythm.

Over a team-high 32 starts, Eovaldi posted a 3.75 ERA and 2.79 FIP to go along with 195 strikeouts and 35 walks across 182 1/3 innings of work. Among qualified American League starters this year, the hard-throwing righty ranked ninth in strikeout rate (25.5%), first in walk rate (4.6%), first in FIP, third in xFIP (3.48), and first in fWAR (5.6), per FanGraphs.

Since helping the Red Sox win a World Series title in 2018 and signing a four-year, $68 million contract that winter to remain in Boston, Eovaldi has risen to the occasion on and off the field as he also serves as the club’s Jimmy Fund captain.

Per MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo, Eovaldi is the highest Red Sox finisher in Cy Young voting since Sale finished fourth in 2018. The last Boston hurler to win the award was right-hander Rick Porcello, who did so following an exceptional 2016 campaign.

(Picture of Nathan Eovaldi: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox’ Alex Cora finishes 5th in American League Manager of the Year voting

Red Sox manager Alex Cora finished fifth in American League Manager of the Year voting on Tuesday night, as revealed by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on MLB Network.

Cora received one first-place vote, three second-place votes, and two third-place votes to finish with the fifth-highest point total (16) among those who were considered.

Rays manager Kevin Cash, a former teammate of Cora’s in Boston, ultimately took home A.L. Manager of the Year honors, making him the first manager to win the award in back-to-back seasons since Bobby Cox did so with the Braves in 2004 and 2005.

In total, Cash received 19 of 30 total first-place votes and 109 voting points to finish ahead of the likes of Mariners manager Scott Servais (71 points), Astros manager Dusty Baker (33 points), Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo (23 points), Cora (16 points), White Sox manager Tony La Russa (15 points), and Tigers manager A.J. Hinch (3 points).

Of those BBWAA members who put Cora on their ballots, the New York Post’s Ken Davidoff was the one who gave him that first-place vote. MLB.com’s Ian Browne, the Bergen Record’s Pete Caldera, and the Associated Press’ Mark Didtler issued him second-place votes, while MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo the Buffalo News’ Mike Harrington penciled him in as their third-place finisher.

This now marks the second time in which the Puerto Rican national has appeared on American League Manager of the Year ballots after finishing as the runner-up behind only then-Athletics skipper Bob Melvin in 2018.

Since first being named Red Sox manager in November 2017, Cora has led Boston to a 284-202 record spanning three winning seasons, two postseason appearances, and one World Series title three years ago.

After serving a one-year suspension for his role in the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal as Houston’s bench coach in 2017, the 46-year-old returned to the Sox this past season and oversaw a resurgent team that won 92 games, topped the Yankees in the American League Wild Card Game, and was just two wins shy of another trip to the Fall Classic.

(Picture of Alex Cora: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Was Red Sox’ Nathan Eovaldi snubbed in American League Cy Young Award race?

The three finalists for the American League Cy Young Award were unveiled by the Baseball Writers Association of America on MLB Network on Monday night. Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi was not one of them.

Instead, Yankees right-hander Gerrit Cole, White Sox right-hander Lance Lynn, and Blue Jays left-hander Robbie Ray were announced as the three finalists for the award. The winner will be revealed on November 17 at 6 p.m. eastern time.

While Cole, Lynn, and Ray are each up for their first career Cy Young Awards, Eovaldi would have been as well — and rightfully so.

2021 marked Eovaldi’s third full season with the Sox after coming over in a July 2018 trade with the Rays and signing a lucrative four-year, $68 million contract extension later that winter to remain in Boston.

Across 32 starts this year, the 31-year-old righty posted a 3.75 ERA and 2.79 FIP to go along with 195 strikeouts to 35 walks over 182 1/3 total innings of work while emerging as Boston’s true ace.

Among qualified American League pitchers this season, Eovaldi ranked fourth in innings pitched, first in walks per nine innings (1.73), first in walk rate (4.6%), eighth in ERA, first in FIP (2.79), third in xFIP (3.48), fourth in SIERA (3.60), third in xERA (3.37), and first in fWAR (5.6), per FanGraphs.

Still, despite putting up those positive results, Eovaldi was seemingly snubbed from the American League Cy Young race without making it to the final group of three that consists of Cole, Lynn, and Ray.

If you were to include Eovaldi in there and make it a group of four, the fireballer would lead the pack in several categories including fWAR, FIP, walks per nine innings, and walk rate.

That being said, Eovaldi also produced the highest ERA and BABIP (.326), or batting average on balls in play, of the group. This can mainly be attributed to bad luck and poor defense being played behind him. The Red Sox did lead the American League in errors (108), after all.

Even while taking all those points into consideration, Eovaldi — who turns 32 in February — was not named a Cy Young finalist at the end of the day. He will still appear on plenty of ballots come next Tuesday, but may have ultimately deserved more recognition for the impressive 2021 campaign he just put together.

(Picture of Nathan Eovaldi: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Former Red Sox Pitcher Curt Schilling Misses out on Baseball Hall of Fame by 20 Votes

Former Red Sox right-hander Curt Schilling was once again denied enshrinement into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Tuesday night, as Yankees legend Derek Jeter and Rockies legend Larry Walker were the only two players elected into this year’s class.

Of the 397 votes cast by ‘select 10-year members’ of the Baseball Writers Association of America, Jeter, in his first year on the ballot, received 396 (99.7%), while Walker, in his 10th and final year on the ballot, received 304 (76.6%) to just sneak past the 75% threshold.

As for Schilling, the three-time World Series champion received 278 of the 397 votes, or 70%, meaning he fell short by 20 votes.

Schilling remains one of the only two non-active pitchers with at least 3,000 career strikeouts to not be in the Hall of Fame. The other is another former Sox hurler in Roger Clemens.

Since his name first appeared on the ballot back in 2013, here’s how the 53-year-old has fared with the voters:

2013: 38.8%

2014: 29.2%

2015: 39.2%

2016: 52.3%

2017: 45%

2018: 51.2%

2019: 60.9%

2020: 70%

As you can see, Schilling’s time on the Hall of Fame ballot has been a bit of a roller coaster with a more steady rise towards the latter half of his eligibility.

With eight years on the ballot down, Schilling has but two years of eligibility remaining before he is taken off the list.

Putting the character clause aside and talking strictly about what he did on the field, it is clear, at least in my mind, that Schilling should get in within the next two years.