You heard it here first, Ryan Howard has been selected as the 2006 National League’s Most Valuable Player. In a race that pitted him against World Series-winner Albert Pujols, Howard’s home runs and unmatched offensive production came out on top. This will add another honor to Howard’s nascent MLB career. Just this season he has garnered the following awards:
- National League MVP
- MVP of the Japan All-Star Series
- Silver Slugger Award
- Hank Aaron Award
- Home Run Derby Champion
- The Sporting News Player of the Year
- August and September Player of the Month
- Player of the Year Award and the National League Outstanding Player Award, as determined by his peers.
The official announcement will come today at 2pm on ESPN. More details to follow. Congratulations, Ryan!
More Details: Baseball Writers’ Association of America MVP Ballot
From the results, it appears the race was not as close as many people thought it would be. Ryan Howard received 20 first-place votes and 12 seconds (no third-place voters) which totaled 388 points; while Albert Pujols went 12-19-1 for 347 points. Ryno finished the season with 58 homers,149 RBIs and batted .313.
This means that Howard is the second player in MLB history to win the Rookie of the Year and MVP Awards in back-to-back seasons; Cal Ripken is the other. Cal and Ryan also both won the home run derby and MVP in the same year.
Two other Phillies were represented on the ballot. Chase Utley finished with 98 points for 8th place and Jimmy Rollins, surprisingly, was awarded 2 points placing him 22nd. This means that the Phillies as a team finished with 486 points, the most total points out of any team. The Mets had only 402 points among 4 players.