We were extremely blessed to see a number of exciting young talents play in Major League Baseball this season. From Fernando Tatis Jr. to Pete Alonso, there are so many exciting youngsters in the big leagues today. MLB announced the recipients of the 2019 American League and National League Rookie of the Year Awards on Monday, By no surprise, Yordan Alvarez of the Houston Astros took home the AL honors, and Pete Alonso of the New York Mets took home the NL honors.
Yordan Alvarez wins AL Rookie of The Year
Alvarez came up to the majors in June and absolutely terrorized major-league arms from the get-go. He went deep seven times in his first 12 games and also set an MLB record with 51 runs driven in through his first 45 contests. The 22-year old ended the season hitting .313 with 27 home runs and 78 RBIs in just 87 games while leading all rookies with 53 extra-base hits. He was quickly known for his tape-measuring home runs, hitting balls to inhuman distances numerous times throughout the year.
Even though Alvarez appeared in just 87 games in the big leagues this season, his ability to hit for average and power was too good to ignore. He won AL Rookie of the Year honors unanimously, receiving all 30 first-place votes. The Astros phenom beat out John Means of the Baltimore Orioles and Brandon Lowe of the Tampa Bay Rays.
Alvarez was clutch in big situations, hitting .344 with six home runs and 50 RBIs with runners in scoring position this year. With the bases juiced, he hit a whopping .625. The youngster struggled in the postseason for the Astros, hitting just .241. But overall, his rookie season was one to remember and has definitely set the tone for what looks to be a very decorated big-league career in Houston.
Alonso Wins NL Rookie of the Year
Alonso had one of the most historic rookie seasons in MLB history. The former Florida Gator made the Mets opening day roster and quickly made himself known among his peers for his ability to hit baseballs out of the yard at a high rate. Alonso finished the year hitting .260 with a major league-leading 53 home runs and 120 RBIs. He became the first player in Mets history to hit 50 or more home runs in a single season. The 24-year old’s 53 home runs is also an MLB rookie record. Meanwhile, he appeared in the MLB All-Star Game and won the Home Run Derby in July, slugging out Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
Alonso beat out Atlanta Braves right-hander Mike Soroka and San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. to win the award. The Mets slugger was just one vote shy of being the unanimous choice. Alonso was second in the big leagues this season with 66 barrels per Statcast, which shows his ability to consistently square up the baseball. As the 2019 season went on, he turned into one of the most feared hitters in the game.
Alonso is, without a doubt, one of the most important pieces of this New York Mets franchise, as they look to get back into the postseason. With ex-Met Carlos Beltran now the team’s manager, it’ll be interesting to see how they fare in 2020. With this award now in his trophy case, Alonso can feel satisfied about his first year in the big leagues, and there’s no question that he has an extremely bright future ahead of him.