Mookie Betts was elected the American League MVP, marking the 11th time a Red Sox player was honored. The others were Ted Williams in 1946 and 1949, Jimmie Foxx in 1938, Jackie Jensen in 1958, Carl Yastrzemski in 1967, Fred Lynn in 1975, Jim Rice in 1978, Roger Clemens in 1986, Mo Vaughn in 1995 and Dustin Pedroia in 2008.
Betts’ election increased to 11 times how often the AL award has gone to a right fielder, a list that includes two-time winners Roger Maris in 1960 and 1961 and Juan Gonzalez in 1996 and 1998. Other winning right fielders were Jensen, Frank Robinson in 1966, Reggie Jackson in 1973, Jeff Burroughs in 1974, Ichiro Suzuki in 2001 and Vlad Guerrero in 2004. There have been 12 right-field winners in the NL.
Mike Trout, who won the award in 2014 and 2016, finished second for the fourth time, tying a record he shares with Stan Musial, Ted Williams and Albert Pujols. Trout also finished second in AL voting in 2012, 2013 and 2015.
Musial, the NL winner in 1943, 1946 and 1948, was the NL runner-up in 1949, 1950, 1951 and 1957. Williams, the AL winner in 1946 and 1949, was the AL runner-up in 1941, 1942, 1947 and 1957. Pujols, the NL winner in 2005, 2008 and 2009, was the NL runner-up in 2002, 2003, 2006 and 2010.
Musial played in 22 major-league seasons, Williams in 19 and Pujols 18. Trout just completed his eighth.
This was the 14th AL MVP election won by that season’s batting champion and the second year in a row, following Jose Altuve, on a list that includes two-time winners Foxx in 1932 and 1938 and Miguel Cabrera in 2012 and 2013. Other AL batting champs honored were Charlie Gehringer in 1937, Joe DiMaggio in 1939, Mickey Mantle in 1956, Frank Robinson in 1966, Carl Yastrzemski in 1967, George Brett in 1980, Suzuki in 2001 and Joe Mauer in 2009. There have been 19 such winners in the NL, including this year with the Brewers’ Christian Yelich.
Betts and Yelich were the fourth combination of batting champs named MVP in the same season. The others were Gehringer and Joe Medick in 1937, Foxx and Ernie Lombardi in 1938, and Cabrera and Buster Posey in 2012.
Betts, Trout, Jose Ramirez, J.D. Martinez, Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor and Matt Chapman were named on all ballots.
Ballots, submitted before the postseason, were cast by two writers in each league city. They are tabulated on a system that rewards 14 points for first place, nine for second, eight for third on down to one for 10th.
2018 AL MVP
|Mookie Betts, Red Sox||28||2||410|
|Mike Trout, Angels||1||24||2||1||2||265|
|José Ramírez, Indians||1||10||11||3||4||1||208|
|J.D. Martinez, Red Sox||1||2||8||5||5||2||6||1||198|
|Alex Bregman, Astros||1||4||10||9||3||3||192|
|Francisco Lindor, Indians||4||3||7||11||4||1||169|
|Matt Chapman, Athletics||2||4||9||12||2||1||141|
|Khris Davis, Athletics||1||9||4||2||41|
|Blake Snell, Rays||1||7||6||1||38|
|Justin Verlander, Astros||1||4||3||3||26|
|Mitch Haniger, Mariners||2||3||4||16|
|Aaron Judge, Yankees||2||2||10|
|Xander Bogaerts, Red Sox||2||1||1||9|
|Jose Altuve, Astros||4||1||9|
|Blake Treinen, Athletics||1||4||7|
|Andrelton Simmons, Angels||2||3||7|
|Whit Merrifield, Royals||2||2||6|
|Edwin Diaz, Mariners||2||1||5|
|Giancarlo Stanton, Yankees||1||1||4|
|Didi Gregorius, Yankees||1||1||3|
|Jed Lowrie, Athletics||1||1||3|
|Trevor Bauer, Indians||1||1|
|Aaron Hicks, Yankees||1||1|
|Chris Sale, Red Sox||1||1|