INTERNET BASEBALL WRITERS ASSOCIATION: Washington, D.C. Chapter: DC-Internet Baseball Writers Association Announces 2012 Player Achievement Awards:
'via Blog this'
I suppose something must be said at the conclusion of the 2012 season. 98 wins, an 18 win improvement, the NL East crown and the best record in baseball. OK not bad guys.
Really, not a lot to say. Other than it's not a fluke. There aren't the otherworldly luck in close games the O's had or fluky out of career norm seasons by one or two players. This was a team that started the year as a 80-85 win team with upside and ended the year as a bone fide 98 win team.
True you can point out that the rotation was healthy all season and maybe we got more than we could expect from LaRoche and Desmond but all in all really nothing that out of the ordinary. Yes they had no serious starting pitcher injuries but that will happen with a young yet experienced rotation. They lost Zim, Desmond and Werth for significant time and it really didn't slow things down. Now they are better with those guys don't get me wrong but they were able to paste over any holes that appeared in the lineup with ease.
I can't even recall a serious losing streak although when you win 98 games that isn't likely anyway. That strong stable of starters meant if you were only as good as your next day's starter, they were pretty damn good every day.
I think the two things that really elevated the team to this remarkable regular season were Gio's brilliance and of course Bryce.
I've already made my mea culpa on Gio. Nothing in his past would indicate he'd be an easy top 4 Cy Young vote (R.A.'s got that sewn up sorry). but he clearly is. Dickey, Cueto, Kershaw and Gonzalez in any rational ballot.
But Bryce really moved the needle. And the number that flabbergasts me is one that never gets talked about. It's not a new fangled stat either. It's 98. That's in runs scored. They flashed that number in a recent game and my jaw hit the floor. Seriously, 98 Runs! That's insane. It's absolutely true (just Fangraphed it to be sure.)
Throw out every other number. He's 14th IN THE MAJORS IN RUNS AS A 19 YEAR OLD. Who missed three weeks! Now a bit of this has to do with the guys hitting behind him driving him home and I under stand that but 98 runs is still a damn impressive number. It really brings out a lot of those little things that Bryce brought . . . taking extra bases for example. Also, Bryce got ON BASE. Can't score if you can't get on.
Hoist a tall one boys. Great season. Which will not be diminished by anything that happens from now on. Postseason is a crap shoot.
And one more thing, STFU you stupid troll Christine Brennan.