by Alex Poletti
The Second String’s annual panel of over 100 experts has officially released their pre-season polls for every major award category for the 2019 MLB season.
AL Cy Young: Bartolo Colon
Although he does not currently have a team for the 2019 season, our experts found it hard to vote against the 2005 AL Cy Young winner to have another monster year. In 2016, Colon was a 15-win pitcher with a mid-3.00 ERA. Our panel has him signing with the Rangers and emerging as their true ace this year, shocking the nation and winning his second Cy Young.
AL MVP: Bartolo Colon
It’s been a hot second since the American League had a pitcher as an MVP, but we see this year as the year. With Mookie Betts poised to have a down year, JD Martinez’s defensive liability and the normalcy of Mike Trout’s excellence, the door is open for Colon’s stellar pitching to guide him to a long-awaited MVP award.
AL Comeback Player of the Year: Bartolo Colon
Given our other picks, this one should be no shock. Colon put up a horrendous 5.78 ERA last season, so anything near an all-star campaign will get him the nod. His only competition for this award would be superstar shortstop Carlos Correa of the Astros, but our analysts predict he’ll be kneecapped by a large Italian man named Vin to start the season.
AL Rookie of the Year: Bartolo Colon
Is Big Sexy technically a rookie? No. But he’s going to be a different kind of player, so much so that he’ll seem like a rookie. PECOTA projections have Bartolo ending the season with 23 wins, a Gibson-esque 1.12 ERA and 423 strikeouts, so he won’t even be recognizable. And we understand that some BBWAA voters may not accept Colon as a rookie, but we also understand that Vin can be very persuasive.
AL Manager of the Year: Bartolo Colon
Chris Woodward is penciled in as the Rangers skipper this year, but things can change; Colon, our pick for virtually every MLB award, hasn’t even signed with the Rangers yet. If the season doesn’t start off as strong as management hopes, our analysts find it likely that Woodward will be canned in favor of the veteran presence of Bartolo Colon, who will lead the Rangers to their first postseason berth since 2016.
Platinum Glove: Bartolo Colon
You think Matt Chapman has this award locked up? Vin thinks otherwise.
NL Cy Young: Bartolo Colon
You think Big Sexy can be contained to one league? Think again. We have half of Bartolo’s wins coming from the Cincinnati Reds. In the NL, expect Colon to have burgeoning strikeout numbers that will push him over the likes of Max Scherzer to become the first player in history to capture a Cy Young award in both leagues in the same season.
NL MVP: Bartolo Colon
That’s right. And this is just for his hitting stats, too. You’ve seen that home run. Expect a second-half power spike like JD Martinez experienced after being traded to Arizona in 2017. This time, however, there will be hardware involved.
Remainder of Awards:
NL Comeback Player of the Year: Bartolo Colon
NL Rookie of the Year: Bartolo Colon
NL Manager of the Year: Bartolo Colon
Platinum Glove: Bartolo Colon
World Series Winner: Bartolo Colon
Hank Aaron Winner: Bartolo Colon
Roberto Clemente Award for Sportsmanship: Roberto Osuna