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Every MLB team’s Most Valuable Player for the 2019 season

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What Im Hearing: Sports Reporter Bob Nightengale gives his predictions for MLB’s individual awards.
USA TODAY

With the Major League Baseball season over, it’s time to hand out the hardware.

Mike Trout is likely to win his third MVP award in six years. And Cody Bellinger is set become a first-time winner.

The secret ballots for the American and National League MVPs won’t be unveiled until after the World Series in November, but why not announce the winners now and crown an MVP on every team?

For many clubs, the choice was obvious. But for some, particularly on teams losing 90-plus games, the task was a little more difficult. But just like the All-Star Game, every team has to be represented. 

Here are our winners for each of the 30 teams: 

AL EAST

New York Yankees – 2B DJ LeMahieu: LeMahieu proved he could hit outside Coors Field. The free agent signee was the rock on a team decimated by injuries all season. He led the team in RBI, runs and made a run for the AL batting crown while filling in at first and third base. 

Tampa Bay Rays – RHP Charlie Morton: Morton has gotten better with age. At 35, he set career highs and ranks in the top 5 in the AL in wins (16), ERA (3.05), strikeouts (240), batting average against (.215) and WHIP (1.08).

Boston Red Sox – SS Xander Bogaerts: Bogaerts was one of the few bright spots on the defending World Series champs. He led all shortstops in doubles, RBI and OPS and became the first Red Sox shortstop with 30+ homers and 100+ RBI in a season since Nomar Garciaparra in 1998.

Toronto Blue Jays – Biggio, Bichette, Guerrero Jr. – This rookie trio made baseball fun to watch again North of the Border. The sons of three former All-Stars are the future of the franchise. 

Baltimore Orioles – OF Trey Mancini: Mancini had a breakout year in his third full season in the majors. Mancini, Alex Bregman and Anthony Rendon were the only hitters with at least 34 home runs, 35 doubles and 100 runs scored this season. 

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  • Yankees: 2B DJ LeMahieu1 of 30
  • Rays: RHP Charlie Morton2 of 30
  • Red Sox: SS Xander Bogaerts3 of 30
  • Blue Jays: 2B Cavan Biggio, 3BVladimir Guerrero Jr. and SS Bo Bichette4 of 30
  • Orioles: OF Trey Mancini5 of 30
  • Twins: SS Jorge Polanco6 of 30
  • Indians: RHP Mike Clevinger7 of 30
  • Royals: DH Jorge Soler8 of 30
  • White Sox; 3B Yoan Moncada9 of 30
  • Tigers: RHP Shane Greene (now with the Braves)10 of 30
  • Astros: 3B Alex Bregman11 of 30
  • Athletics: SS Marcus Semien12 of 30
  • Rangers: LHP Mike Minor13 of 30
  • Angels: OF Mike Trout14 of 30
  • Mariners: LHP Marco Gonzales15 of 30
  • Braves: OF Ronald Acuna Jr.16 of 30
  • Nationals: 3B Anthony Rendon17 of 30
  • Phillies: C J.T. Realmuto18 of 30
  • Mets: 1B Pete Alonso19 of 30
  • Marlins: OF Brian Anderson20 of 30
  • Cardinals: RHP Jack Flaherty21 of 30
  • Brewers: OF Christian Yellich22 of 30
  • Cubs: 1B Anthony Rizzo23 of 30
  • Reds: 3B Eugenio Suarez24 of 30
  • Pirates: 1B Josh Bell25 of 30
  • Dodgers: OF Cody Bellinger26 of 30
  • Diamondbacks: OF Ketel Marte27 of 30
  • Rockies: 3B Nolan Arenado28 of 30
  • Giants: LHP Will Smith29 of 30
  • Padres: SS Fernando Tatis Jr.30 of 30

AL CENTRAL

Minnesota Twins – SS Jorge Polanco: With 22 homers, he ranks eighth on a team that slugged an MLB-record 307. Polanco, who is a season removed from serving an 80-game performance-enhancing drug suspension, was the teams’ best player on offense and defense.

Cleveland Indians – RHP Mike Clevinger:Don’t let his hippie’ personality fool you. He posted double-digit strikeouts in seven of his 21 starts and finished with a 13-4 record and 2.71 ERA on a club just missing the playoffs. 

Chicago White Sox – 3B Yoan Moncada: After striking out a MLB-high 217 times in 2018, Moncada improved dramatically in his sophomore season. The superstar in the making finished with career highs in every major offensive category despite playing nearly 20 fewer games. 

Kansas City Royals – DH Jorge Soler: Apologies to Whit Merrifield who had another  solid season, but it’s hard not to recognize Soler, who set a franchise record with 48 home runs. 

Detroit Tigers – RHP Shane Greene: Yes, he’s no longer on the Tigers. But Greene’s tenure in Detroit still holds after the first-time All-Star posted a 1.18 ERA in 38 appearances with 22 saves in Motown before he was traded to the Braves.

AL WEST

Houston Astros – 3B Alex Bregman: Attitude. Swag. He’s got both. And Bregman prefers World Series rings over MVP awards. 

Oakland Athletics – SS Marcus Semien: On a team full of anonymous players headed to the postseason, Semien shined as one of the finest all-around shortstops in the league. Get this, he broke Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson’s single-season franchise record for home runs from the leadoff spot with 29 earlier this month. 

Texas Rangers – LHP Mike Minor: Yes, it was fishy how he reached 200 strikeouts in his last start. But, he ranks tied for first in the majors in WAR for pitchers (7.8) with Justin Verlander, according the baseball-reference.com. 

Los Angeles Angels – OF Mike Trout: Not only is he the best player on his team, he’s the best player in baseball. And yes, foot surgery ended his season mid-September, but after another historic season, the two-time AL MVP is the leading contender to win the award again this year. 

Seattle Mariners – LHP Marco Gonzales: This was a tough one. The Mariners used nearly 70 different players this year, so we’ll give the nod to Gonzales, who led the club in WAR. 

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  • Sept. 29: Cardinals players celebrate clinching the NL Central title with a 9-0 win against the Cubs.1 of 55
  • Cardinals outfielder Tyler O'Neill gets his shirt ripped off in the celebrations.2 of 55
  • The Cardinals will face the Braves in the NLDS.3 of 55
  • Cardinals players celebrate clinching the NL Central title with a 9-0 win against the Cubs.4 of 55
  • Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina leads the celebrations after clinching the NL Central title.5 of 55
  • Sept. 27: Oakland Athletics players celebrate after clinching a wild-card berth. They fell to the Mariners but had clinched when the Indians lost.6 of 55
  • The Athletics will play the Tampa Bay Rays in the wild-card race.7 of 55
  • Athletics starting pitcher Mike Fiers celebrates with teammates.8 of 55
  • An Athletics fan holds a fan celebrating the team clinching a wild-card berth.9 of 55
  • Sept. 27: The Tampa Bay Rays celebrate clinching a wild-card spot after a win against the Toronto Blue Jays. It's the Rays' first postseason appearance since 2013.10 of 55
  • Rays infielder Ji-Man Choi douses himself.11 of 55
  • Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier celebrates.12 of 55
  • Rays manager Kevin Cash heads toward the celebration.13 of 55
  • Rays pitcher Emilio Pagan (15) celebrates getting the final out against the Toronto Blue Jays to clinch a wild-card spot.14 of 55
  • Sept. 25: Designated hitter Nelson Cruz celebrates with teammates in the clubhouse after the Minnesota Twins clinched the AL Central Division title.15 of 55
  • The Twins picked up their first division title since 2010.16 of 55
  • Twins left fielder Luis Arraez (front left) celebrates with teammates in the clubhouse.17 of 55
  • Twins center fielder LaMonte Wade Jr. (30) right fielder Eddie Rosario (20) and center fielder Ian Miller (41) celebrate together after their clinching win against the Detroit Tigers.18 of 55
  • Sept. 25: The Milwaukee Brewers celebrate in the clubhouse after clinching at least a wild-card berth.19 of 55
  • The Brewers celebrate in the clubhouse.20 of 55
  • Brewers manager Craig Counsell celebrates in the clubhouse.21 of 55
  • Sportscaster Bob Uecker celebrates in the clubhouse.22 of 55
  • Milwaukee Brewers right fielder Christian Yelich speaks to reporters in the clubhouse after the team's clinching win. The Brewers kept winning after the reigning MVP broke his kneecap.23 of 55
  • Sept. 24: Washington Nationals players Max Scherzer and Gerardo Parra celebrate after the team clinched an NL wild-card spot.24 of 55
  • Sept. 24: The Washington Nationals celebrate clinching a wild-card spot after they swept a doubleheader from the Phillies and the Cubs lost to the Pirates.25 of 55
  • Pitcher Max Scherzer and third-base coach Bob Henley celebrate.26 of 55
  • Max Scherzer and Gerardo Parra pose for a selfie.27 of 55
  • Washington's Anthony Rendon is doused in the Nationals' locker room.28 of 55
  • Nationals shortstop Trea Turner celebrates his sixth-inning grand slam against the Phillies.29 of 55
  • Houston Astros first baseman Yuli Gurriel is doused by designated hitter Yordan Alvarez after the team won the AL West title.30 of 55
  • The Houston Astros celebrate after clinching the AL West title.31 of 55
  • Houston Astros relief pitcher Chris Devenski (right) celebrates with pitching coach Brent Stom after winning the AL West.32 of 55
  • Houston Astros outfielders Michael Brantley, George Springer and Josh Reddick celebrate after winning the AL West title.33 of 55
  • The Houston Astros celebrate after winning the AL West title.34 of 55
  • Houston Astros right fielder Josh Reddick celebrates after the team captured the AL West title.35 of 55
  • The Houston Astros celebrate after clinching the AL West title.36 of 55
  • Sept. 20:  Braves players celebrate in the fountain behind center field after clinching their second consecutive NL East title.37 of 55
  • Sept. 20: Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman gets doused.38 of 55
  • Sept. 20:  Braves relief pitcher Touki Toussaint and center fielder Billy Hamilton celebrate.39 of 55
  • Sept. 20: Atlanta's Josh Donaldson gets showered with beer.40 of 55
  • Sept. 20: Braves first base coach Eric Young celebrates with a cigar in the clubhouse.41 of 55
  • Sept. 20: Braves manager Brian Snitker hoists his grandson Luke while celebrating the clinching win against the Giants.42 of 55
  • Sept. 19: Yankees relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman celebrates as New York wins its first American League title since 2012.43 of 55
  • Sept. 19: New York's Giancarlo Stanton is doused with champagne.44 of 55
  • Sept. 19: Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka is doused with champagne after New York's clinching win against the Orioles.45 of 55
  • Sept. 19: Aaron Judge celebrates in the Yankees' locker room.46 of 55
  • Players spray Yankees manager Aaron Boone with champagne.47 of 55
  • Sept. 19: Didi Gregorius, left, and Cameron Maybin celebrate on the field.48 of 55
  • Sept. 19: CC Sabathia and third base coach Phil Nevin celebrate on the field.49 of 55
  • Sept. 10: Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu, left, douses center fielder Cody Bellinger50 of 55
  • Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Rich Hill, center, is doused during a lockerroom celebration after defeating the Baltimore Orioles 7-3 during a baseball game, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, in Baltimore. The Dodgers clinched the National League West Division title with the win. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) ORG XMIT: BAB2051 of 55
  • Los Angeles Dodgers' Edwin Rios sprays liquor during a lockerroom celebration after the Dodgers defeated the Baltimore Orioles 7-3 during a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, in Baltimore. The Dodgers clinched the NL West title. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) ORG XMIT: BAB2052 of 55
  • Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts holds a cell phone during a video conference with injured infielder Max Muncy, during a lockerroom celebration after the Dodgers defeated the Baltimore Orioles 7-3 during a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, in Baltimore. The Dodgers clinched the NL West title. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) ORG XMIT: BAB2053 of 55
  • Los Angeles Dodgers hitting strategist Brant Brown is doused during a lockerroom celebration after the Dodgers defeated the Baltimore Orioles 7-3 in a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, in Baltimore. The Dodgers clinched the NL West title. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) ORG XMIT: BAB2054 of 55
  • Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Caleb Ferguson, left, and catcher Will Smith react after the clinching victory.55 of 55

NL EAST

Atlanta Braves – OF Ronald Acuña Jr.: Power, speed is a deadly combination at the top of the lineup. Acuña nearly joined Barry Bonds, Jose Canseco, Alfonso Soriano and Alex Rodriguez as the only players ever in the 40 home run-40 stolen base club. He finished with 41 homers, 37 stolen bases.

Washington Nationals – 3B Anthony Rendon: He made a case for the NL MVP in the second half, but will fall short. But, he played well enough to earn him a big cash payout this winter when he becomes a free agent. 

New York Mets – 1B Pete Alonso: He’s livin’ a dream. He set the franchise record for home runs and broke Aaron Judge’s all-time rookie record with 53.

Philadelphia Phillies – C J.T. Realmuto: He didn’t arrive in Philly with the same fanfare as did Bryce Harper, who put up solid numbers. But Realmuto commanded respect behind the plate. He threw out an MLB-high 47 percent of stolen base runners.

Miami Marlins – Pick ’em: Brian Anderson. Garrett Cooper. Sandy Alcantara. Miguel Rojas. Billy the Marlin. Let’s let Derek Jeter choose. 

NL CENTRAL 

St. Louis Cardinals – RHP Jack Flaherty: Apologies to Paul Goldschmidt, but Flaherty has been lights out since the All-Star break. After a 4-6 start and 4.64 ERA, the right-hander has allowed just 10 earned runs over 15 starts for a 0.91 ERA since the break.

Milwaukee Brewers – OF Christian Yelich: The reigning MVP had better numbers this season than his 2018 campaign. A kneecap fracture on Sept. 11 ended his chances of repeating. 

Chicago Cubs – 1B Anthony Rizzo: Does anyone on this team want the ballyhoo? Javier Baez? Kris Bryant? After an abysmal meltdown in September, its hard to pick one, but we will opt for Rizzo. 

Cincinnati Reds – 3B Eugenio Suarez: Suarez set the record for most homers in a season (49) by an NL third baseman, passing Mike Schmidt and Adrian Beltre’s single-season record. And, he also established a new single-season record for players from Venezuela, surpassing Andrés Galarraga.

Pittsburgh Pirates – 1B Josh Bell: The first-time All-Star posted a 30+ homer, 100+ RBI season after a sophomore slump. Now the question is if he will he follow in the footsteps of Andrew McCutchen as the next Pirates superstar? 

NL WEST

Los Angeles Dodgers – OF Cody Bellinger: Bellinger, who slugged 47 homers, is the favorite to win the MVP in the NL – especially after Yelich’s injury ended his season. He would be the first Dodgers’ positional player to take home the award since Kirk Gibson in 1988.

Arizona Diamondbacks – INF/OF Ketel Marte: Had it not been for Marte’s season-ending injury, he might have garnered a few more votes for NL MVP.  He posted a .329/.389/.592 slash line and almost won the NL batting crown. He will finished second to Yelich by .0006 points.

San Francisco Giants – LHP Will Smith: The All-Star closer – not the actor or Dodgers catcher – reached rarified air for a team that struggled all season. He became just the second pitcher to finish a year 6-0 or better with at least 30 saves (6-0, 34). Minnesota’s Joe Nathan went 7-0 with 36 saves in 2006. 

San Diego Padres – SS Fernando Tatis Jr.: He was the most exciting player in baseball and would have given Alonso a run for his money for the Rookie of the Year award if he didn’t have season-ending back surgery in August. At that point, the Padres went 15-27 without him.

Colorado Rockies – 3B Nolan Arenado: Arenado might have had the best season of his career. He slugged 41 homers and finished with a career-high .962 OPS. But, he will once again be overlooked when it comes to the NL MVP award because of Bellinger, Yelich, Rendon and Marte.

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