I realize that the whole Mike Trout-Miguel Cabrera MVP debate has led to a lot of old school-new school tribalism (and a lot of Detroit-non-Detroit tribalism), but it seems that in the past week or so that tribalism has taken a rather silly turn: people claiming that Miguel Cabrera was/is getting no attention for his Triple Crown push.
I’ve seen it all over Twitter, almost always from people who are Tigers fans: people saying “Why is Cabrera getting no attention?” Or “Cabrera is gonna win the Triple Crown and NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT IT!” We had a commenter here say that the other morning. He said in the middle of a time when HBT had run no less than three posts dedicated to Miguel Cabrera in a 12 hour period.
Here’s the latest incarnation of it, from The Big Lead:
Impressive feat, right? Except nobody outside of Detroit seems to care. Is it because Cabrera isn’t universally loved by the media? Is it because of the sport’s shift away from traditional stats and to Sabermetrics?
Five years ago, would Cabrera’s Triple Crown have received significantly more publicity? Is everyone still skeptical about cheating baseball players one year after the NL MVP, Ryan Braun, tested positive for Performance Enhancing Drugs, and one month after the leading hitter in the NL was busted for PEDs, too?
I’m not sure what planet this criticism is coming from. If you do a Google News search for “Miguel Cabrera MVP” — and even if you cut it off before yesterday to avoid all of the cut-and-paste “Cabrera won the Triple Crown” reports that came out last night — you get 93,000 results. In that same time frame you get 13,000 or so “Mike Trout MVP” results.
That’s obviously not scientific, but I defy anyone to find me a single newspaper in city with a baseball team or any sports website out there that has not made multiple mentions of Miguel Cabrera and the Triple Crown. Bud Selig issued an official statement from Major League Baseball congratulating him on the feat. Sure, maybe it could stand to be hyped even more given how rare it is (though at the moment I’m not sure how one could hype it more), but it has been hyped quite a lot.
What I think is really going on are people who are very pro-Cabrera in the MVP race not happy that he was being at all compared with Trout in the first place, and looking for considerably more Cabrera coverage they can point to and say “ah ha! More people agree with me! My preconceptions on the topic are validated!”
Folks: that fight is almost certainly over. I’d be shocked if Cabrera does not win the MVP. And I’d be equally as shocked if anyone can explain cogently and specifically — as opposed to merely making vague complaints — how Miguel Cabrera’s accomplishment is being somehow overlooked.
By the way: “Cabrera Triple Crown overlooked” has 1,500 Google News results in that time frame. Maybe if everyone who is complaining about the lack of kudos Cabrera is getting and actually gave him kudos their life wouldn’t feel so unfulfilled.