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Baseball Digest honors Trout, Verlander, Yates

@mattkellyMLB
October 3, 2019

Baseball Digest Magazine has selected its major award winners for the 2019 MLB season. Angels superstar Mike Trout earned the Baseball Digest/eBay MLB Player of the Year Award, while Astros ace Justin Verlander claimed MLB Pitcher of the Year and Padres closer Kirby Yates was named the Majors’ Relief Pitcher

Baseball Digest Magazine has selected its major award winners for the 2019 MLB season. Angels superstar Mike Trout earned the Baseball Digest/eBay MLB Player of the Year Award, while Astros ace Justin Verlander claimed MLB Pitcher of the Year and Padres closer Kirby Yates was named the Majors’ Relief Pitcher of the Year.

The awards were voted on by an expert panel that included Ford C. Frick Award winner Bob Costas, MLB Network personalities Greg Amsinger, Harold Reynolds and Brian Kenny and Christopher Russo and former MLB player Eduardo Perez.

It was far from a runaway for Trout, who edged Dodgers star Cody Bellinger by just two points, 30-28, while receiving 17 first-place votes. Trout is a frontrunner for his third American League MVP Award after knocking a career-high 45 homers and pacing the league in on-base percentage, slugging, OPS and Baseball-Reference WAR despite missing the last three weeks of the season with a foot injury. This is Trout’s second Baseball Digest Player of the Year Award, following his first such honor in 2014.

Verlander led the Majors with 21 wins while also pacing the sport in innings, WHIP and opponent batting average and finishing just behind his teammate, Gerrit Cole, in ERA and strikeouts. This is his second Baseball Digest Pitcher of the Year Award, following his 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young Award season with the Tigers.

Yates captured his first Baseball Digest Relief Pitcher of the Year Award after leading the Majors with 41 saves in 44 opportunities. Yates’ 1.19 ERA also led all big league relievers (min. 50 innings), and that mark lowered to a microscopic 0.59 when he was brought into a save opportunity.

Matt Kelly is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB.