We mentioned this a while back but we need to mention it again that Carlos Pena is the Devil Rays nominee for The Hank Aaron Award.

We have made our feelings about the award clear in the past. In short the award is severely flawed and was created as a sponsorship cash-cow for Major League Baseball, in effect tainting the name of one of the all-time greats.

So why are we mentioning Carlos Pena’s nomination for a second time? Because for some reason DRays Bay seems to think that Pena should win the award.

really there’s no reason Carlos shouldn’t win.

We have no problem supporting a member of the Devil Rays. In fact, we think all Rays fans should go vote for Pena to show our support and appreciation. But to say that there is “no reason” he shouldn’t win reeks of homerism unseen since the last time we listened to Hawk Harrelson on a White Sox home broadcast. The award is supposed to be given to “the best overall offensive performer in each league”. In essence, it is supposed to be the hitters version of the Cy Young Award.

Pena is having a great season and we don’t want to diminish what he has accomplished. He is hitting .275 with a club record 35 home runs and 98 RBI to go with a .996 OPS. But El Gato should not win The Hank Aaron Award.

5 Reason’s Carlos Pena should not win…

  1. Alex Rodriguez (.310-46-131, 1.054 OPS)
  2. Alex Rodriguez
  3. Alex Rodriguez
  4. Alex Rodriguez
  5. Alex Rodriguez

3 Other reasons Pena should not win…

  1. Maglio Ordonez (.354-26-120, 1.016 OPS)
  2. Vladimir Guerrero (.326-22-110, .952 OPS)
  3. Justin Morneau (.282-29-99, .865 OPS)

Congratulations go out to Carlos Pena on having a great year. One could make an argument for Comeback Player of The Year (although we are unsure if one decent season in the past is a mark of having already “been there”) but Pena is not the top hitter in the AL this season.

The Hank Aaron Award [MLB]
The Hank Aaron Award Has No Legitimacy And Needs To Be Fixed [Rays Index]
Vote for Pena [DRays Bay]



  1. Anonymous says:

    I think as Devil Ray fans, we aren't use to having one of our players listed as one of the best players in the game. But I think you are being too harsh on the writer championing Pena for the award. I agree that ARod would be tops in most people's minds and is an excellent choice. However, after ARod, I would argue for Pena or Big Papi. Pena doesn't have as good of counting stats like RBIs as Morneau, but his OBA and SLG are much higher than Morneau. Right now, I see Pena's production to be the 3rd best in the AL.

  2. Big Mike says:

    I would say that Maglio Ordonez has just as much a claim as A-Rod.

    And I think the Prof's point wasn't that Pena shouldn't be considered, just that there is no way it was a no-brainer as DRB suggests

  3. Tallyray says:

    I'll give you A-Rod, who's ridiculous, and Magglio. I just can't say that Vlad or Morneau are reasons why Carlos shouldn't win. Aren't we past the days were batting average was that important? Pena is slightly behind Guerrero in OBP and is significantly ahead of Morneau. He towers over both in SLG% (.055 over Guerrero, .086 over Morneau). Plus, even with 75 less PAs he is leading both in walks, only down 1 RBI to Morneau (before tonight) and leads both in runs and home runs. He also has grounded into 9 fewer double plays than Morneau and Vlad which makes up for any OBP advantage that Vlad may have.

    Sure saying "Pena is the obvious choice" is a homer statement, but saying concretely that Morneau and Guerrero are better hitters this year than Pena is almost anti-homerism.

  4. The Professor says:


    well played...well played indeed

    you are right about Morneau, but I would say an argument can still be made for Vlad over Pena, but I would say at worst/best it is a toss-up and wouldn't argue with either side.

    WOW. who would have thought at the beginning of the season that we would be discussing who had a better season, Morneau, Vlad the Impaler or El Gato.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I think Pena read this post before last night's game. El Gato was rippin' tits last night.


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