Morgan Ensberg finished 4th in the NL MVP voting. Not bad for a guy who was one of the biggest disappointments in baseball a year ago. I probably would have had him 6th (behind Lee, Pujols, Bay, Clemens, and Andruw Jones), but in any case it's a great honor for him. I don't quite see why Derrek Lee got exactly one 1st place and one 2nd place vote, since he and Pujols had nearly identical statistics, but whatever. Pujols has certainly been the 2nd best player in the National League the previous three years, and he deserves it. Good for him.
With all due respect to the "Willy T deserved Rookie of the Year!" talk, he wasn't even the best rookie on the Astros. Chad Qualls was still technically a rookie, and I'll take him and his 3.28 ERA in 79.2 IP, including an awesome 2nd half and great playoff run (besides one memorable pitch to Mr. Konerko) over Willy T's 666 OPS any day. One interesting thing I did see is that Baseball Prospectus had a short article up about Gold Glove predictions and they had Taveras as a top-5 defensive CF. That is a HUGE asset, particularly with Lane and Berkman likely to be lumbering around in the corner OF spots in '06. We can expect his offense to improve somewhat (.350 OBP? Please?), and with his speed and defense, I want Willy T as our starting CF for the next few years. Period. But he absolutely was NOT NL Rookie of the Year this year.
I really hope anyone that reads this blog has been checking out Scott Barzilla's position-by-position scouting reports for this offseason. His latest, "Scouting the Relievers", is typically excellent. I don't want to spoil it (go read it here!), but let's just say he ends up recommending a guy that I liked a lot last year and still like. Go get him, Tim!