How do you define "Most Valuable"?
The first line of the letter sent to MVP voters:
"There is no clear-cut definition of what most valuable means. It is up to the individual voter to decide who was the most valuable player in each league to his team."
It may be the single truest thing ever written.
In an interesting article in which Curtis Granderson and Jose Bautista often fall on opposite sides of the fence over all the usual issues (must the MVP's team contend, the value of counting stats, etc.), here's a fascinating anecdote that I'd forgotten, if I ever knew:
In 1934, Lou Gehrig hit .363 with 49 homers and 165 runs batted in, league-leading totals in each category. But the Yankees lost the pennant to the Detroit Tigers, whose player-manager, catcher Mickey Cochrane, was the M.V.P. Cochrane hit .320 with 2 home runs and 76 R.B.I.
I think I remembered that Gehrig was one of the Triple Crown winners who didn't win the MVP award (it happened to Ted Williams twice), but I must have assumed that the guy who beat him out must have had a great season, too.
Given the MVP voter's love for BA, is Robinson Cano a stronger MVP candidate than Curtis Granderson?