Originally Posted by Brainiac
All of the Trout fans should consider this: since August 1st, Cabrera has hit .343 with 19 home runs, 52 RBI, and he's scored 42 runs. Trout has hit .284 with 12 home runs, 28 RBI, and has scored 49 runs.
Cabrera's batting average down the stretch in the pennant race was 59 points higher, he hit 7 more home runs, and his combined total for runs scored and runs batted in was 94 versus 71 for Trout.
If Trout had produced as well as Cabrera when it mattered the most, the Angels would be in the playoffs. Instead, they finished in 3rd place, which is exactly where they would have finished if Trout had never played an inning this year.
It's not even close. The vote for MVP should be unanimous.
And the Angels are a whole half-game worse than the Tigers over that stretch. They went 32-25 since August 1. The Tigers are 33-25. The Tigers were just fortunate to play a lot of games against the shitty AL Central. That's the only reason they're in the playoffs and the Angels are missing it. Saying "Trout slumped and that's why the Angels missed the playoffs" misses the mark, IMO. For one thing, he still produced an .860 OPS during the time period you defined. For another, it doesn't account for any contributions Trout made with the glove or his legs (contributions Cabrera can't make). Trout stole 18 bases during that period (18/19) and played Gold Glove defense in CF.
BTW, Most statisticians only count HR once when calculating runs created (Since counting them for RBI and R creates an artificial number and is not statistically sound). Looking at the numbers that way, Cabrera accounts for 74 runs (42+52-19), Trout for 65 (28+49-12). That's not a very big separation in the key stats for Cabrera's case.
And RBI and R are not definitive numbers in a small sample size, IMO, since they're entirely dependent on the team around the players.
Truth is neither player is a "clear case" over the other. They're both deserving, and I won't complain regardless of who wins. I would vote for Trout, personally, because he can help you win games in any way a baseball player can possibly help a team win games. Cabrera can win them with his bat - which is tremendous - but that's about it.