NEW YORK -- The beginning of baseball's awards season has already seen some serious hardware delivered to the Bronx. Aaron Judge's historic season saw the Yankees' slugger win the American League's Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year Award on Monday. He's also a finalist for the AL Most Valuable Player
NEW YORK -- The beginning of baseball's awards season has already seen some serious hardware delivered to the Bronx. Aaron Judge's historic season saw the Yankees' slugger win the American League's Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year Award on Monday. He's also a finalist for the AL Most Valuable Player Award, while Luis Severino stands as a finalist for the AL Cy Young Award.
Judge was a unanimous decision for the ROY Award, while he and the Astros' Jose Altuve are expected to finish at the top of the MVP balloting in some order. Votes were cast by participating members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America (BBWAA) prior to the end of the regular season.
"We have a great team," Judge said in October. "We have a lot of guys coming back. We have a lot of guys in the Minor Leagues waiting for their turn to come up here and do their thing. We're all excited for next year and what it holds for us."
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The 25-year-old Judge hit .284/.422/.627 in 155 games for the Yankees this past season, leading the AL with 128 runs, 52 homers and 127 walks. Judge collected 24 doubles, three triples and 114 RBIs while leading the Majors with 208 strikeouts.
Andrew Benintendi of the Red Sox and Trey Mancini of the Orioles were the other finalists for the Rookie of the Year Award.
Severino, 23, went 14-6 with a 2.98 ERA in 31 starts, holding opponents to a .208 average while completing his first full Major League season. Severino ranked third in the AL in ERA, fourth in strikeouts (230), ninth in innings (193 1/3) and tied for ninth in wins.
He is competing against Corey Kluber of the Indians and Chris Sale of the Red Sox for the Cy Young Award, which will be revealed on Wednesday on MLB Network at 6 p.m. ET.
Severino finished second in the AL in opponents' slugging (.338) and OPS (.603), third in average and on-base percentage (.266). An AL All-Star for the first time in 2017, Severino's 10.71 K/9 IP ratio was the highest in Yankees history.
"I take the mound every time thinking of going six, seven [innings]," Severino said. "That's my mindset. Every time they give me the ball, I'm trying to pitch a good game. I had a lot of problems last year with the changeup. They told me to work on it a lot in the offseason, so that's what I did. I have a lot of confidence in it now. I can throw my changeup in any count. That's the difference from last year."
Judge is pitted against Altuve and the Indians' Jose Ramirez for the AL MVP Award, which will be unveiled on Thursday on MLB Network at 6 p.m. ET. Since 2003, five of the eight players who led or tied for their league lead in both homers and runs won the MVP, with the other three finishing second.
"I'm biased. That's my guy," Carsten Sabathia said of Judge. "I think he deserves it. We wouldn't be in this position without him. I think that's the definition of an MVP."
Over the same span, five of the seven players who recorded at least 120 runs, 45 homers and 100 RBIs in a season were named MVP.
"He just sees the big picture. He's a pretty resilient guy," Brett Gardner said. "Mentally, he's on top of his game and he knows that good things are around the corner, even when things aren't going well. There's more to his game than home runs and walks. He plays really good defense out there in right field, too, and I think that's important. When you struggle at the plate, don't take things out on defense with you. I think he does a really good job of that."
Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and on Facebook.