With pitchers Justin Verlander, the Tigers lead the AL Central by a comfortable margin. Without Verlander's 19-5 record, the Tigers would be essentially the Cincinnati Reds. If ever a pitcher deserved to win MVP, this seems like the year. Of course, it seemed like the year in 1999, when Pedro Martinez went 23-4 with a 2.07 ERA for a team that was just six games better than .500 in games in which he didn't get a decision. Rank 'Em: Your AL MVP ballot
Is Justin Verlander the favorite?
Bautista: 7.7 WAR, 80 RBIs, 1.111 OPS
Gonzalez: 5.0 WAR, 94 RBIs, .940 OPS
Granderson: 6.1 WAR, 98 RBIs, .968 OPS
Verlander: 6.3 WAR, 19-5, 2.28 ERA
Only in extraordinary circumstances?
Roger Clemens was the last AL starting pitcher to win the award, and that was 25 years ago. Should pitchers enter the discussion only every decade or so?
Did a pitcher get robbed in 1999?
Alomar: 7.9 WAR, .955 OPS (Won AL Central)
Martinez: 8.3 WAR, 2.07 ERA (AL wild card)
Palmeiro: 4.9 WAR, 1.050 OPS (Won AL West)
Ramirez: 8.0 WAR, 1.105 OPS (Won AL Central)
Rodriguez: 6.0 WAR, .914 OPS (Won AL West)