Only one NL team won over 90 games, and that was the New York Mets with 97. The Mets had to deal with late-season pitching injuries, and only made it to the NLCS, losing to NL Central champion St. Louis in seven games. The Cardinals then went on to gain an upset victory in the World Series, beating the Tigers in just five games.
The Mets easily won the East, St. Louis was 1.5 games in front of the Central with 83 wins, and San Diego and Los Angeles each had 87 wins in the West, with LA getting the Wild Card spot. The worst record in the league belonged to the Cubs, who lost 96, followed by the Pirates with 95 losses. Philadelphia and Atlanta had the most productive offenses, while San Diego and Houston led the pitching patrol.
Freddy Sanchez of Pittsburgh won the batting title at .344, followed by Florida's Miguel Cabrera at .339. Philly's Ryan Howard led in HR and RBI, Jose Reyes of NY in triples and steals, Sanchez in doubles, Barry Bonds in on-base, and Albert Pujols in slugging and OPS. Chase Utley scored 131 runs, Carlos Beltran and Jimmy Rollins 127 each. Juan Pierre had 204 hits, Utley 203 and Sanchez 200. Sanchez had 53 doubles and Luis Gonzalez 52. Reyes had 17 triples and 64 steals. Howard had 58 homers, Pujols 49, Alfonso Soriano 46. Howard drove in 149, Pujols 137, Lance Berkman 136.
The leading pitchers in wins had but 16, a mark reached by Aaron Harang, Derek Lowe, Brad Penny, John Smoltz, Brandon Webb, and Carlos Zambrano. Roy Oswalt was just ahead of Chris Carpenter in ERA, while Harang edged Jake Peavy in strikeouts. Oswalt had a 2.98 ERA, Carpenter 3.09, Webb 3.10. Harang had 216 strikeouts, Peavy 215, Smoltz 211. Trevor Hoffman led the league in saves, while Webb edged Oswalt in ERA+.
Win Shares leaders, players; Albert Pujols (St. Louis) 39, Carlos Beltran (New York) 38, Miguel Cabrera (Florida) and Lance Berkman (Houston) 34, David Wright (New York) 32, Ryan Howard (Philadelphia) 31, Alfonso Soriano (Washington) 30, Jose Reyes (New York) 29, Chase Utley (Philadelphia) and Mike Cameron (San Diego) 28, Rafael Furcal (Los Angeles) and Barry Bonds (San Francisco) 27, Garrett Atkins (Colorado), Jimmy Rollins (Philadelphia) and Nick Johnson (Washington) 26, Andruw Jones (Atlanta), Hanley Ramirez (Florida) and Ryan Zimmerman (Washington) 25.
Win Shares leaders, pitchers; Brandon Webb (Arizona) 22, Bronson Arroyo (Cincinnati) and Roy Oswalt (Houston) 21, Carlos Zambrano (Chicago) and Chris Carpenter (St. Louis) 19, John Smoltz (Atlanta) and Aaron Harang (Cincinnati) 17, Jason Schmidt (San Francisco) 16, Derek Lowe (Los Angeles) and Chris Capuano (Milwaukee) 15.
WARP1 scores: Pujols 11.9, Beltran 10.4, Cabrera 10.0, Berkman 9.0, Wright 8.6, Howard 8.6, Soriano 8.6, Reyes 5.6, Utley 7.3, Cameron 6.9, Furcal 7.9, Bonds 6.0, Atkins 6.4, Rollins 7.4, Johnson 8.4, Jones 6.9, Ramirez (rookie) 6.9, Zimmerman (rookie) 6.5. Pitchers, Webb 9.0, Arroyo 9.1, Oswalt 8.6, Zambrano 8.1, Carpenter 7.6, Smoltz 8.5, Harang 7.6, Schmidt 6.0, Lowe 6.3, Capuano 5.6.
WAR leaders, position players: Pujols 8.5, Beltran 7.9, Utley 7.3, Cabrera 6.7, A. Jones 6.3, Berkman and Howard 6.2, Reyes 6.1, Atkins 5.8, Rolen 5.6, Bay 5.4, Johnson and Soriano 5.3, Hall and Wright 5.2. Pitchers: Webb 7.0, Oswalt and Smoltz 5.7, Harang 5.4, Carpenter 5.2, Jennings and Lowe 4.5, Maddux 4.4, Cook 4.3, Arroyo 4.2, Peavy, Schmidt, and Sheets 4.0, Capuano and Zambrano 3.9.
1.) Ryan Howard, 388 points
2.) Albert Pujols, 347
3.) Lance Berkman, 230
4.) Carlos Beltran, 211
5.) Miguel Cabrera, 170
6.) Alfonso Soriano, 106
7.) Jose Reyes and Chase Utley, 98
9.) David Wright, 70
10.) Trevor Hoffman, 46
1.) Brandon Webb, 103 points
2.) Trevor Hoffman, 77
3.) Chris Carpenter, 63
4.) Roy Oswalt, 31
Rookie of the Year
1.) Hanley Ramirez, 105 points
2.) Ryan Zimmerman, 101
3.) Dan Uggla, 55
4.) Josh Johnson, 11
Manager of the Year
1.) Joe Girardi, 111 points
2.) Willie Randolph, 81
3.) Bruce Bochy, 50
4.) Grady Litttle, 30
Top player: Albert Pujols. He led in WS, WAR, and WARP, and played for the winning team. Hard to pick against him. Pujols is the best player in the game right now.
#1 Albert Pujols, #2 Carlos Beltran, #3 Miguel Cabrera, #4 Lance Berkman, #5 Ryan Howard, #6 Chase Utley.
Top pitcher: Brandon Webb in a close race over an unimpressive field. No one stands out, but Webb was the best overall.
#1 Brandon Webb, #2 Chris Carpenter, #3 Roy Oswalt, #4 John Smoltz, #5 Aaron Harang.
Top rookie: Ryan Zimmerman edges Hanley Ramirez mainly because Zimmerman is younger and should have a better career.
Top manager: Willie Randolph held the Mets together, but couldn't make it through the postseason.