Frank Franklin II/Associated Press
The 2017 Rookie of the Year picks in the American League and National League went as expected, with Cody Bellinger and Aaron Judge taking home the awards Monday.
Judge beat out Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi and Orioles outfielder Trey Mancini for AL honors after the Yankees star led the league with 52 home runs and 128 runs scored.
Bellinger also showcased his power this season with 39 home runs for the Dodgers, helping him top Pirates first baseman Josh Bell and Cardinals shortstop Paul DeJong.
AL Voting Results
1. Aaron Judge, New York Yankees (30 first-place votes, 150 points)
2. Andrew Benintendi, Boston Red Sox (75 points)
3. Trey Mancini, Baltimore Orioles (31 points)
4. Matt Olson, Oakland Athletics (5 points)
5. Yuli Gurriel, Houston Astros (5 points)
NL Voting Results
1. Cody Bellinger, Los Angeles Dodgers (30 first-place votes, 150 points)
2. Paul DeJong, St. Louis Cardinals (56 points)
3. Josh Bell, Pittsburgh Pirates (32 points)
4. Rhys Hoskins, Philadelphia Phillies (12 points)
5. German Marquez, Colorado Rockies (10 points)
Results courtesy of MLB Network.
The Yankees account celebrated Judge’s honors with some impressive statistics:
New York Yankees @Yankees
Led the league in Rs, BBs, HRs. 52 HRs = Most ever by a rookie 127 BBs = Most ever by a rookie Winning the HR Derby = 1st time ever by a rookie Was there ever a doubt?!?!? Congrats, @TheJudge44, on being the UNANIMOUS @officialBBWAA AL Rookie of the Year. We’re so proud! 👏💙😭 https://t.co/ZlW38HRLro
Based on his season, there wasn’t a lot of shock when the final voting was announced:
Paul Hembekides @PaulHembo
This season, Aaron Judge became the 1st player to lead the AL in runs, HR, and walks since Mickey Mantle in 1958. He became the youngest player to do so (25) since Ted Williams in 1942.
SI MLB @si_mlb
To nobody’s surprise, Aaron Judge is the unanimous winner of American League Rookie of the Year.
Chris Mason @ByChrisMason
Andrew Benintendi finishes second in AL Rookie of the Year voting. No surprise that Aaron Judge is the runaway winner.
Judge’s family was also proud of the accomplishment live on MLB Network:
MLB GIFS @MLBGIFs
The Judge family is a proud one tonight. 😍 https://t.co/KhBYdlRXjo
He became the first Yankees player to bring home the honor since Derek Jeter in 1996.
Both leagues had relatively easy calls compared to past years, although Judge was especially a no-brainer considering he is a finalist for the AL MVP award as well.
The 25-year-old didn’t do much in his 27 games in 2016, but he burst onto the scene in 2017 with 30 home runs and a .329 batting average before the All-Star break. He became even more of a household name when he put on a show at the Home Run Derby.
His stellar performance continued throughout the year, helping the Yankees reach the ALCS before they lost to the Astros in seven games. He also earned a spot on the cover of next year’s MLB The Show video game:
AL #ROY finalist: ✅ AL #MVP finalist: ✅ #TheShow18 cover athlete: ✅ What a day for @TheJudge44. https://t.co/GcWR8qovUL
In other years, Mancini would get plenty of recognition with his 24 home runs and .826 OPS, as would Benintendi, who had 20 home runs, 20 stolen bases and ranked second on the Red Sox with 90 RBI. However, it was nearly impossible for any other rookies to compete with Judge this season.
There wasn’t any more surprise in the NL with Bellinger taking home every vote:
Los Angeles Dodgers @Dodgers
UNANIMOUS! @Cody_Bellinger is the 2017 National League Rookie of the Year! Congrats, Cody! https://t.co/VRbmClxbOj
This continues an impressive trend for the Dodgers, who also had Corey Seager win the award last year:
ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo
Cody Bellinger is the 18th @Dodgers player to win Rookie of the Year, 9 more than any other franchise. Bellinger is the 1st rookie to lead a 100-win team in both HR and RBI (via @EliasSports). https://t.co/aN6ZkGjbFN
As MLB Stat of the Day noted, the duo of Judge and Bellinger reached rare territory:
MLB Stat of the Day @MLBStatoftheDay
[email protected] & @Cody_Bellinger are the 4th pair of players to be unanimously voted Rookies of the Year in the AL and NL. https://t.co/7m131ZUWGl
This didn’t mean neither player faced real competition. Bell hit 26 home runs and led the Pirates with 90 RBI, while DeJong led the Cardinals with 25 home runs and played impressive defense up the middle after joining the team at the end of May. Rhys Hoskins also turned heads in limited playing time.
However, Bellinger was the clear top option as one of the driving forces behind the Dodgers’ MLB-best 104 wins this season.
The first baseman and outfielder finished second in the NL in home runs, trailing only Giancarlo Stanton, and he earned an All-Star appearance despite beginning the year in Triple-A.
Considering he is just 22 years old, there are clearly bright days ahead for Bellinger, as well as all six Rookie of the Year finalists this season.