Jose Altuve, Giancarlo Stanton Win 2017 MLB MVP Awards
Players of two starkly different sizes and backgrounds won the MLB MVP Awards on Thursday night.
2017 MLB MVP Award Winners news
The 6-foot-6, 245-pound Miami Marlins right field Giancarlo Stanton took home the National League Most Valuable Player.
Stanton, 28, is of mostly African-American and Irish descent, while Altuve is Venezuelan.
Altuve said he is glad size doesn’t matter as much in baseball as it does in other sports.
“That’s what I love about baseball, that every single guy can play the game,” he said. “There’s not a rule you have to be six feet tall to play baseball and become a good player.”
Altuve tied former Yankees shortstop Phil Rizzuto (1950) and onetime Philadelphia A’s pitcher Bobby Shantz (1952) as the shortest MVPs in baseball history.
The Venezuelan earned 27 of 30 first-place votes and finished far ahead of Yankees rookie Aaron Judge, 405 points to 279.
Altuve won surprisingly easily in balloting completed by the Baseball Writers Association of America, while Stanton finished atop the fourth-closest voting in history.
Judge congratulated Altuve on the win with this tweet:
— Aaron Judge (@TheJudge44) November 17, 2017
Stanton edged Reds first baseman Joey Votto, 302-300.
Altuve, 27, was a major asset to the league’s strongest offense, hitting a majors-best .346 with 24 homers, 81 RBI, 32 steals and a .957 on-base plus slugging percentage.
Stanton, meanwhile, smacked 18 homers in a 25-game stretch in August as part of a 60-home run explosion.
“It’s almost like a start-from-scratch moment,” said Stanton. “You remember the thoughts you had as a kid and when times were good and bad as a pro and in the Minors and everything building up, and you just finally sit and give thanks for that, and I’ll have more time to think about everything that’s gone on in the seasons over the years and to look forward to a new journey, too.”
When Astros shortstop Carlos Correa missed 40 games with a thumb injury, Altuve filled in to play some of his finest baseball, hitting .384 with a 1.102 OPS. He led the Majors with a .372 average on fastballs and leading the AL with a .361 average on breaking balls.
With his award, Stanton — a four-time All-Star adds to his long list of accomplishments, which includes a Home Run Derby victory (2016), two Silver Slugger Awards, and 2 NL Hank Aaron Awards.
Altuve — a five-time All-Star — has previously won a Gold Glove, an AL Hank Aaron, and 4 Silver Slugger Awards. He also played for Venezuela’s national team in this year’s World Baseball Classic.
Many MLB fans seemed to believe Judge would win the AL MVP after the tall youngster hit a rookie record-breaking 52 homers.
LOS ANGELES, CA – APRIL 25: Giancarlo Stanton #27 of the Miami Marlins loses his bat on a swing during the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on April 25, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)