MLB Postseason Missing Brightest Stars

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by BetUS - 10/6/2021 3:35 PM Share

Only twice in the history of the NFL has the league's MVP not played in the postseason. It happened with Johnny Unitas in 1967 and O.J. Simpson in 1973.

Although in those cases, Unitas and the Colts actually finished tied for the most wins in the NFL, but lost their division in a tiebreaker with the Rams. The Bills missed the playoffs by one game in 1973, and Simpson had just become the first player to ever rush for 2,000 yards in a season.

In the NBA a non-playoff participant MVP winner has only happened once — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1975-76. He averaged 28 points, 17 rebounds, five assists and four blocked shots a game for the 40-42 Lakers, narrowly edging out Bob McAdoo of the Buffalo Braves, who did make the playoffs that season.

In Major League Baseball we're about to see both MVP awards go to players whose season has already ended.

American League MVP Favorites

This award belongs to Shohei Ohtani. Not much short of an apocalyptic meteor would result in him not winning the award for his incredible two-way season . He finished with 46 home runs, 103 runs scored, 103 RBI, a 9-2 record as a starting pitcher, and with 151 strikeouts in 130.1 innings pitched.

It's been a truly historic season for Ohtani, and he did it while playing for the fourth place Angels, something he complained about in recent weeks. Becoming a global sports icon is all well and good, but he wants to win baseball games.

In a year without Ohtani, Vladimir Guerrero, Jr. is the easy winner of the award. He finished tied for the MLB lead with 48 home runs, the most ever by a 22-year-old. But his Blue Jays also finished in fourth place, albeit a very different fourth than the Angels. Toronto was playing meaningful baseball right up until the final game of the season, largely because of Guerrero and teammate Marcus Semien.

Kansas City catcher Salvador Perez also hit 48 home runs and led the Majors with 121 RBI. But his season, along with Ohtani's and Guerrero's, ended on Sunday.

National League MVP Favorites

The NL MVP race is less obvious, but still features a number of players who have already hit the offseason.

Fernando Tatis, Jr. has been playing like one of the best players in baseball all season long, leading the National League with 42 home runs. He also finished the season second in the NL in slugging percentage, and finished his season last weekend.

Bryce Harper also had a great year, and nearly got the Phillies into the postseason. Harper hit 35 home runs, batted .309, and led the National League in doubles and slugging percentage. But he only nearly got the Phillies into the postseason. Harper is also done playing for the year.

National League batting champion Juan Soto was a home run derby participant and league leader with a .465 on-base percentage. His Washington Nationals lost 97 games and finished in last place.

American League Cy Young Favorites

The current MLB odds betting favorite to win the AL Cy Young award is Robbie Ray of the Blue Jays. He won the AL ERA title at 2.84 and led the Major Leagues with 248 strikeouts. We will not, however, get to see Ray pitch in the postseason.

The only other real possibility to win the Cy Young in the American League is Gerrit Cole of the Yankees. He did make the postseason and drew the start for the wild card game at Boston, making him the only one of the potential AL award winners to appear in the playoffs.

National League Cy Young Favorites

The NL MVP favorites are all on vacation now, but the Cy Young favorites are still playing. The winner of the ERA title, Corbin Burnes, is preparing for the Brewers NLDS matchup with the Braves, which begins on Friday.

The Dodgers Max Scherzer was right behind Burnes in ERA. Scherzer led the National League in strikeouts, and was also tops in WHIP at 0.86. Scherzer is the scheduled starter for L.A.'s home wild card game against the Cardinals on Wednesday, and the only one with a chance to win the World Series .

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