Jeter the best choice for AL MVP

While he's not a slam-dunk choice, Derek Jeter still stands out as the best candidate in the race for the AL MVP.

Originally Published: September 26, 2006
By Rob Neyer | ESPN Insider
Wading through a hefty backlog of solid e-mail from fellow ESPNers...

Mike C: You recently stated that there is a consensus about Derek Jeter being the MVP. Try as I might I can find no articles explaining why he deserves this award. I can find articles about David Ortiz or Johan Santana not deserving the award, but little to explain why Jeter should win it. Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe came closest, when he quoted the criteria for electing the winner of the pre-MVP "League Award." Since when does a high average merit the MVP? Doesn't it say something that Jeter's average is second in the AL but his OBP is fourth? I know he'll drive in 100 runs as a No. 2 hitter, but there are two players on his team who will score more runs than him. Look at the Yankees' record and position in the standings pre- and post-Bobby Abreu trade. Is Jeter even the Most Valuable Player on his team? And please don't tell me anything about how he held the Yankees together when Gary Sheffield and Hideki Matsui went down. I don't feel bad for a team that was then forced to rely only on Johnny Damon, A-Rod and Jason Giambi until they could obtain Abreu. I am an admitted Jeter-hater, but I don't think I'm way out in left field here.


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