Bob Melvin wins AL Manager of the Year Award after leading surprising A’s to playoffs

Bob Melvin, who directed the Oakland Athletics to the American League West title and their first postseason appearance since 2006, was named AL Manager of the Year in a close vote over the Baltimore Orioles’ Buck Showalter, who led that team to its first winning season since 1997. Results were announced on the MLB Network.

Melvin, 51, and Showalter, 56, were listed first or second on all 28 ballots cast by two writers in each league city. Melvin received 16 first-place votes and 12 seconds to score 116 points, based on the 5-3-1 tabulation system. Showalter got 12 first-place votes and 16 seconds for 108 points. They were the only managers named to every ballot. In his first season as a manager, Robin Ventura of the Chicago White Sox placed third with 12 third-place votes.

The eight-point differential marked the fourth tightest race in AL voting. There was a tie in the 1996 vote between the Texas Rangers’ Johnny Oates and the New York Yankees’ Joe Torre. In 1984, the Detroit Tigers’ Sparky Anderson edged the Kansas City Royals’ Dick Howser, 96-95. In 1986, the Boston Red Sox’ John McNamara outpolled the Rangers’ Bobby Valentine, 95-90. There have been no ties in the National League, but two ballots were decided by one vote: the St. Louis Cardinals’ Whitey Herzog over the Cincinnati Reds’ Pete Rose, 86-85, in 1985 and the San Diego Padres’ Bud Black over the Reds’ Dusty Baker, 104-103, in 2011.

Melvin, who replaced Bob Geren as Oakland’s manager during the 2011 season, took the A’s from a 74-88 record last year to a 94-68 mark in 2012. The A’s won the last six games of the season, capped by a three-game sweep of Texas to take over first place in the division. Showalter, who won this award in 1994 with the Yankees and in 2004 with the Rangers, led the Orioles to a reversal of their 2011 season, going from 69-93 to 93-69 and an AL wild-card playoff berth.

It was the second Manager of the Year Award for Melvin, who also won in the NL in 2007 with the Arizona Diamondbacks. He is the sixth manager to have the won the award in both leagues, joining Bobby Cox, Tony La Russa, Jim Leyland, Lou Piniella and this year’s NL winner, Davey Johnson. This year marked the third time an Oakland manager was honored. La Russa won twice with the A’s, in 1988 and 1992. He also won in the AL with the White Sox in 1983 and in the NL with the Cardinals in 2002.

The voting (5-3-1 scoring system):

2012 AL Manager of the Year

Name, Team1st2nd3rdPoints
Bob Melvin, Athletics1612116
Buck Showalter, Orioles1216108
Robin Ventura, White Sox1212
Joe Maddon, Rays77
Joe Girardi, Yankees55
Jim Leyland, Tigers22
Ron Washington, Rangers22

Below is a breakdown of the 28 individual ballots, submitted by two writers representing each team in the American League. Note that in some cases (*), when a city does not have enough eligible voters, a writer from another city will represent that chapter. For more information on the voting, see our Voting FAQ.
Jim HennemanHonoraryBALShowalterMelvinVentura
Mel AntonenSI.comBALMelvinShowalterGirardi
Michael SilvermanBoston HeraldBOSShowalterMelvinVentura
Peter AbrahamBoston GlobeBOSShowalterMelvinVentura
Naoko SatoNikkan Sports NewsCHIMelvinShowalterLeyland
Bruce LevineESPN Chicago.comCHIShowalterMelvinVentura
Sheldon OckerAkron Beacon JournalCLEShowalterMelvinVentura
Chris AssenheimerElyria (OH) Chronicle TelegramCLEMelvinShowalterVentura
Chris IottMLive Media GroupDETMelvinShowalterGirardi
Matthew MoweryOakland (MI) PressDETMelvinShowalterVentura
Bob DuttonKansas City StarKCMelvinShowalterVentura
Nicole PoellKansas City StarKCMelvinShowalterWashington
Gregg PattonRiverside Press EnterpriseLAMelvinShowalterLeyland
Jeff MillerOrange County RegisterLAMelvinShowalterMaddon
Tom PowersSt. Paul Pioneer PressMINShowalterMelvinVentura
Patrick ReusseMinneapolis Star TribuneMINMelvinShowalterMaddon
Pete CalderaBergen (NJ) RecordNYShowalterMelvinGirardi
Erik BolandNewsdayNYMelvinShowalterMaddon
Tim KawakamiSan Jose Mercury NewsOAKMelvinShowalterMaddon
Matt KawaharaSacramento BeeOAKMelvinShowalterGirardi
Asuka BrownJiji PressSEAMelvinShowalterMaddon
Jack CurryHonorarySEA*ShowalterMelvinVentura
Marc TopkinTampa Bay TimesTBShowalterMelvinMaddon
Roger MooneyTampa TribuneTBMelvinShowalterVentura
Anthony AndroFoxsportswest.comTEXMelvinShowalterWashington
Gil LeBretonFort Worth Star TelegramTEXShowalterMelvinVentura
Mike RutseyToronto SunTORShowalterMelvinMaddon
Jeff BlairToronto Globe and MailTORShowalterMelvinGirardi