After recording the podcast one evening John and I had a discussion about baseball. He mentioned a concept for a post he had trying to justify Tommy Pham’s MVP candidacy, but ultimately decided that it was just not possible. It reminded me of a discussion I had with a coworker about Tommy Pham’s MVP candidacy and how the Cardinals making the post-season might affect it. Both discussions drew the same conclusion that while Tommy Pham has had a season worthy of down-ballot MVP votes, there are too many players with far better cases to call him the MVP.
He was certainly MVP of the Cardinals, though. And because of that, let’s look at some of his numbers.
476 plate appearances in 116 games played
Tommy started the season out in AAA. He played 25 games and accrued 106 plate appearances for the Memphis Redbirds in 2017. This is because he did not make the Cardinals out of Spring Training, but even without that extra playing time, Pham has achieved new career highs in these categories.
13% walk rate, 22.9% strikeout rate
Of Pham’s four seasons in the majors, this is the highest walk rate and lowest strikeout rate. Of course, this is usually attributed to having his vision corrected, which makes a lot of sense.
This is his highest wRC+ of his career - a .307/.408/.521 slash line will do that.
Finally able to play nearly a full season, the potential Pham showed was finally able to come to fruition. On a per rate basis, Pham was always one of the most valuable players on the Cardinals. With playing time he has been able to accumulate wins to make him the twelfth most valuable player in the National League.
Tommy Pham has worked hard, has overcame injury and a degenerative eye condition, and is the Cardinals most valuable player in 2017. He may not be the National League MVP, but he has more than earned a starting spot on the Cardinals as well as some down-ballot MVP votes.
what else is going on in baseball...
- Giancarlo Stanton hits 55th home run | MLB.com
- Aaron Altherr's slam helps Phils beat Dodgers | MLB.com
- Clayton Kershaw Allowed a Grand Slam | FanGraphs Baseball
- No One Will Want to Face These Yankees | FanGraphs Baseball
- Is This the End for Jose Bautista? | FanGraphs Baseball
- MLB is 17 homers away from breaking the single-season record | SBNation.com
- Braves’ Freddie Freeman threw his son Charlie a Willy Wonka-themed party | SBNation.com
- Welcome to the era of the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad 30-home-run hitter | ESPN
- Statcast looks at running vs slide into first | MLB.com
what the cardinals are up to...
- Wisdom's breakout season pushes him into Cardinals roster discussion | St. Louis Cardinals | stltoday.com
- Hochman: Little things add up to third place for Cardinals | Benjamin Hochman | stltoday.com
- Joe Maddon and the Cubs Have Successfully Intimidated Mike Matheny and the Cardinals | 101Sports.com
KNOW THINE ENEMY...
the cincinnati reds
- Analysis Might Have Saved Tony Cingrani | FanGraphs Baseball
- Series preview: Cardinals at Reds | St. Louis Cardinals | stltoday.com
- Changing baseball: A thought experiment | Red Reporter
the nl central
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