The Detroit Tigers came into the night on Monday needing either a win over Kansas City or a White Sox loss to Cleveland. Chicago took care of business in an 11-0 rout, but MVP candidate Miguel Cabrera made sure the Tigers didn’t need any help.
Cabrera turned in a 4-for-5 night that raised his average from .325 to .329. What was just a two point lead over Minnesota’s Joe Mauer became a six point edge over Mike Trout. Included in those four hits was Cabrera’s 44th home run of the season, a total that is one clear of Josh Hamilton. Cabrera also holds a 10 RBI lead over Hamilton for the AL lead.
No one has won the triple crown since 1967. There are an awful lot of people who will tell you how meaningless RBI are or how batting average is only slightly less meaningless, but those numbers still hold a mystique with the majority of fans and players alike. I don’t have any idea how the voting will turn out, but from where I sit, Miguel Cabrera is not only the best hitter in baseball this season, but he has been for the past couple of years. Does that mean he should be the MVP? I think it does. And, apparently, so do a great many people.
MVP poll on SweetSpot, over 2,000 votes: 69% Cabrera, 15% Cabrera only if he wins TC, 16% Trout, 0% Figgins.
— David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield) October 2, 2012
Of course, I realize that probably none of those 2,000+ people on ESPN have an actual MVP vote, but it makes me feel better nonetheless.
Regardless of the individual awards, the Tigers finally wrapped up a division most had them pegged to run away with. Chicago played well above expectations all season long and the perception was that Detroit floundered. Maybe they did, but the season is a marathon and the Tigers proved to be the better club in the end, even if the margin was closer than they would have liked.
No longer can they be called underachievers. They were supposed to win the division and they did that.