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Valuable concern

Posted by Eric Wilbur, Boston.com Staff November 18, 2008 09:58 AM

Itís hard to believe, but if one of Dustin Pedroia or Kevin Youkilis walks away with the American League MVP award this afternoon, it will be the first for Boston since Mo Vaughn eked out Clevelandís Albert Belle in 1995. A young Manny Ramirez, Belleís teammate, finished 12th that season, three spots behind John Valentin, and one ahead of Tim Wakefield.

Here, courtesy Baseball Reference is the rest of the voting from that season:

voting.jpg

Cleveland closer Jose Mesa finished fourth that year. Fourth. That could be significant as we look to this yearís award, particularly if Youkilis and Pedroia split the votes. If that happens, itís then going to be a toss-up between Twins first baseman Justin Morneau and Angels closer Francisco Rodriguez.

Could a guy that finished third in this yearís Cy Young voting actually be named MVP?

It's possible, though it has yet to happen. Still, letís go back to í95, when Randy Johnson won the AL Cy Young Award ahead of Mesa with 26 first-place votes to his teammate's two. Yet, the Big Unit finished two spots behind Mesa in the MVP voting with 19 fewer points.

Oh, those wacky baseball writers.

So, yeah, K-Rodís name is in play, which would make him the lamest MVP recipient since, what? Willie Hernandez?

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