Houston BWAA announces 2022 award winners
HOUSTON, TX - The Houston Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America has announced the 2022 Astros season award winners:
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER - YORDAN ALVAREZ: Alvarez, a 2022 All-Star who is a first-time winner of this award, was an offensive force this season, hitting .306 in 135 games with 37 home runs and 97 RBI with a .406 on-base percentage, a .613 slugging percentage and a 1.019 OPS. In the AL, he ranked second in OPS, slugging and on-base percentage while ranking third in home runs and tied for fifth in RBI. Alvarez led the Astros in multiple offensive categories, including batting average, home runs, slugging percentage and OPS. In June, he was named AL Player of the Month after hitting .418 in 23 games with nine HR and 28 RBI. Defensively, his seven oufield assists ranked tied for second among AL left fielders, despite playing just 56 games in the outfield.
PITCHER OF THE YEAR - JUSTN VERLANDER: At 39 years old, Verlander had one of the finest seasons of his long, Hall of Fame-caliber career. In 28 starts, he posted an 18-4 record with a 1.75 ERA, which is by far the lowest ERA of his career. In addition to wins and ERA, Verlander also led the AL in WHIP (0.83), Adjusted ERA+ (220), opponents average (.186) and opponents OPS (.497). His 1.75 ERA is the lowest of any MLB pitcher in a full season since RHP Pedro Martinez posted a 1.74 ERA for Boston in 2000. His .497 opponents OPS is the 4th-lowest of any full season in AL history. A bonafide stopper, in his 12 starts following an Astros loss, Verlander was 9-0 with a 1.11 ERA (9ER/73IP). Additionally, Verlander shined down the stretch, posting an 0.84 ERA (3ER/32IP) in his final six starts with 47 strikeouts in 32.0 innings pitched. This marks the third time that Verlander has won this award, with the others coming in 2018 and 2019.
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR - JEREMY PENA: Pena was one of the top rookies in all of baseball in 2022, hitting .253 as the Astros everyday shortstop with 22 home runs and 63 RBI with 11 stolen bases in 13 attempts. His 22 home runs tied the Astros rookie record for a shortstop, set by Carlos Correa in 2015. Among MLB rookies, Pena ranked second in home runs, 4th in hits (132) and 5th in runs scored (72) and RBI (63). Additionally, Pena proved to be a clutch hitter for the Astros as well with two walkoff home runs during the 2022 season. He also shined defensively, ranking second among MLB shortstops in Defensive Runs Saved with 16.
DARRYL KILE GOOD GUY OF THE YEAR - MARTIN MALDONADO: On the field in 2022, Maldonado continued to display the defensive skills that have made him one of the most respected defenders behind the plate in the Major Leagues. As the Astros field general, he helped guide the Astros pitching staff to a record-setting season as they posted the lowest ERA in the American League and in Astros franchise history (2.90). At the plate, Maldonado tallied a career-high 15 home runs. Off the field, Maldonado once again was one of the Astros top leaders. As a standup guy, Maldonado was available to the media often, in good times and bad, serving as a spokesman for his teammates.
FRED HARTMAN LONG AND MERITORIOUS SERVICE AWARD - MARIAN HARPER: In her 32 seasons with the Astros, Marian Harper has become a staple behind the scenes in the Houston community. Currently as the Astros Vice President, Foundation Development, Marian has helped to manage many of the successful community outreach programs for the Astros Foundation for the past several seasons. That includes playing an instrumental role in the development of the Astros MLB Youth Academy, a cornerstone program of the Astros Foundation. Because of her tireless charitable efforts over the past 32 years, Marian has become a recognizable figure throughout Greater Houston. In 2007, she was honored with the prestigious Jimmy Wynn Toy Cannon Award for exceptional community service at the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame. She is also a member of the Astros Hall of Fame Selection committee and works closely with Astros Alumni Association, having developed long-lasting relationships with many former players and coaches.
The Houston BBWAA also announced that longtime beat reporter Brian McTaggart will return as the Chapter Chairman for 2023.