18 October 2008

1961 National League

The NL played its last pre-expansion year with another surprise pennant winner, this time in Cincinnati as the Reds took their first pennant in 21 years. A series of trades shipped some players out and brought others in, and while the Reds were left without a quality catcher, otherwise it worked. The Reds beat out the Dodgers by four games, the Giants by eight, and the Braves by 10. St. Louis was also over .500, in fifth. Pittsburgh slumped to sixth, Chicago was 7th, and the Phillies fielded one of the all-time worst squads to lose 107. The Reds beat them like a drum, which helped their pennant run.

Roberto Clemente won the batting title at .351 after his coming-out party in the 1960 World Series, while Orlando Cepeda led in HR with 46 and RBI with 142. Frank Robinson led in OPS. Maury Wills had the stolen base lead with 35. Vada Pinson was second in average at .343, Wally Moon led in on-base and F. Robby in slugging. Robinson was also second in RBI at 124. Willie Mays led in runs with 129 and was second in homers with 40. Hank Aaron led with 39 doubles, and George Altman with 12 triples.

Joey Jay and Warren Spahn each won 21 games, followed by Jim O'Toole at 19. Spahn led in ERA at 3.02, trailed by O'Toole at 3.10. Sandy Koufax led in strikeouts with 269, followed by teammate Stan Williams with 205. Elroy Face and Stu Miller tied for the lead in saves with 17. Lew Burdette led in innings with 272, and Spahn in complete games with 21.

Win Shares leaderboard:
Players; Hank Aaron (Milwaukee) 35, Frank Robinson (Cincinnati) and Willie Mays (San Francisco) 34, Eddie Mathews (Milwaukee) 33, Vada Pinson (Cincinnati) 32, Orlando Cepeda (San Francisco) 29, Ken Boyer (St. Louis) 27, Roberto Clemente (Pittsburgh) 26, Wally Moon (Los Angeles) 25, Joe Adcock (Milwaukee) 22, Maury Wills (Los Angeles) 21, George Altman (Chicago), John Roseboro (Los Angeles) and Don Hoak (Pittsburgh) 20.

Pitchers; Warren Spahn (Milwaukee) 25, Jim O'Toole (Cincinnati) 22, Joey Jay (Cincinnati) and Sandy Koufax (Los Angeles) 20, Don Drysdale (Los Angeles) 19, Stu Miller (San Francisco), Bob Gibson and Ray Sadecki (St. Louis) 18, Mike McCormick (San Francisco) and Curt Simmons (St. Louis) 17.

WARP3 leaders, position players: Aaron 9.3, Robinson 9.1, Cepeda 8.5, Mays 8.3, Pinson 7.6, Mathews and Frank Bolling (Milwaukee) 7.5, Hoak 7.2, Boyer 6.5, Clemente 6.2, Adcock, Altman, and Ernie Banks (Chicago) 5.6, Ron Santo (Chicago) 5.2.

WARP3 leaders, pitchers: Spahn 8.5, Don Cardwell (Chicago) 7.5, McCormick and Koufax 6.4, Drysdale 6.3, Gibson 5.8, O'Toole and Sadecki 5.7, Jay 5.5, Johnny Podres (Los Angeles) 5.3.

WAR leaders, position players (fWAR): Aaron 9.4, Mays 8.9, Boyer 7.7, Mathews and Robinson 7.6, Pinson 7.3, Cepeda 6.1, Clemente 5.8, Banks 4.5, Bolling 4.2, Adcock and Stuart 4.1, Altman and Moon 3.8, Hoak 3.6, Davenport 3.5. Pitchers (bWAR): Cardwell 5.7, Koufax 5.6, Drysdale and O'Toole 5.1, Spahn 4.8, Williams 4.6, Gibson, Jay, and McCormick 4.5, Sadecki 4.1, Ellsworth and Podres 3.8.

Actual award voting:
MVP (top 13)
Place Name Team 1st place Points
1 Frank Robinson CIN 15 219
2 Orlando Cepeda SFG 0 117
3 Vada Pinson CIN 0 104
4 Roberto Clemente PIT 0 81
5 Joey Jay CIN 1 74
6 Willie Mays SFG 0 70
7 Ken Boyer STL 0 43
8 Hank Aaron MLN 0 39
9 Maury Wills LAD 0 36
10 Jim O'Toole CIN 0 31
10 Warren Spahn MLN 0 31
12 Stu Miller SFG 0 26
13 Wally Moon LAD 0 22
Amazingly, Aaron only placed 8th after a great season.

Cy Young (both leagues together)
1 Whitey Ford NYY 9
2 Warren Spahn MLN 6
3 Frank Lary DET 2

1 Billy Williams CHC 10
2 Joe Torre MLN 5
3 Jack Curtis CHC 1

Best Player: Frank Robinson. He was on the pennant-winners, one Win Share means nothing, and it's the Reds.
I'd go 1.) Frank Robinson 2.) Hank Aaron 3.) Willie Mays 4.) Orlando Cepeda 5.) Vada Pinson 6.) Roberto Clemente.

Best Pitcher: Warren Spahn. He would have won this award a lot, if the NL had its own then.
#1 Warren Spahn, #2 Jim O'Toole, #3 Sandy Koufax, #4 Don Drysdale, #5 Bob Gibson.

Best Rookie: Billy Williams. Torre was a really bad catcher at this time.

Best Manager: Fred Hutchinson, guiding the Reds to their first pennant in 21 years.

No comments: