SB Nation polls its bloggers every year and comes up with its own season awards. This year's presentation is gorgeous. I recommend it.
You might remember such memorable events with the SB Nation Awards such as 2011, the Year Grant Didn't Check His E-mail, or 2012, the Year Grant Didn't Realize Clayton Kershaw Was That Good In September. I screw something up every year. It's part of the fun. But if you're reading this, member of the BBWAA, I'm sure it would be different if I were in your organization.
That written, there's no sense letting my stupid hide in the shadows. Here's my official National League ballot for the SB Nation Awards.
1. Andrew McCutchen
2. Paul Goldschmidt
3. Clayton Kershaw
4. Matt Carpenter
5. Carlos Gomez
6. Yadier Molina
7. Jose Fernandez
8. Joey Votto
9. Adam Wainwright
10. David Wright
Buster Posey had a lot of work to do to fall out of the top 10. But with hard work, bad luck, and miserable second-half hitting, he did it, by jove.
There's no sense explaining the McCutchen vote, considering he's going to win the MVP, but maybe the decision for Goldschmidt second deserves an explanation. He had a magnificent season and played Gold Glove defense, for one. But he also led the world in Win Probability Added, which is a stat that takes into account the score and situation for each out or hit. It's not a good predictive stat -- as in, "This proves Paul Goldschmidt will be clutch next year" -- but it's pretty good to look at the season someone had.
Yes, Goldschmidt did well with the counting stats, rate stats, and WAR. But he also timed his hits in a way that made his team win more. That last one doesn't mean anything for 2014, but it bumps him up in the 2013 voting, if that makes sense.
Also, I hate voting for pitchers, but it feels like I have to. So I do. Every year.
1. Clayton Kershaw
2. Jose Fernandez
3. Adam Wainwright
4. Matt Harvey
5. Madison Bumgarner
The first two -- maybe three -- aren't really anything you can question. And Harvey had to be on there somewhere, even though he missed the end of the season.
That left one spot. And weeks after casting the ballot, when I revisited my vote, I chuckled a bit. Because at the time, I wasn't thinking, "Gotta toss Bumgarner a vote. He was good for my team, man." I legitimately thought he was worth the fifth spot over Cliff Lee. I talked myself into it, somehow.
Cliff Lee: 222 IP, 2.87 ERA, 32 BB, 222 SO
Madison Bumgarner: 201 IP, 2.77 ERA, 62 BB, 199 SO
Suppose I was thinking, "Pfft, ERA, man. Game's about keeping runs off the board, you know? Gotta go with my man, here. Oh, park factors? Nah, nah, don't worry about those. You know that Cream song on Disraeli Gears, right? Lies, statistics, and stupid lies."
(Bumgarner also got a third- and fourth-place vote, and neither of them were Bryan's.)
Rookie of the Year
1. Jose Fernandez
2. Yasiel Puig
3. Shelby Miller
No one cares about the Rookie of the Year. In a normal year, at least. But in this one, there isn't even a controversy until you get to the third slot. I voted for Miller. Hyun-jin Ryu was also a good choice. Not that anyone cares. Some dude even voted for Scooter Gennett, even though that's a character from a Frank Capra movie.
There you go. One man's ballot. I regret not voting for Cliff Lee. But I don't regret that at least one Giant showed up on my ballot. This is how the slippery slope starts, everybody. Next thing you know, I'm voting for Mike Kickham because he showed moxie out there. Real moxie.
I'm okay with that, actually. I'm okay with that.