We have to wait until next week for the awards voted on by the writers, but the Players Choice Awards were announced earlier tonight on MLB Network. Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera was voted as the Player of the Year by his peers, beating out finalists Mike Trout and Andrew McCutchen. So, um, cue the outrage. Or at least get some practice in for next week.
Also of note, Chipper Jones won the Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award for excellence on and off the field. He beat out Paul Konerko and Michael Young for the honor.
Here’s the full list of award winners, which were voted on in September:
AL Outstanding Player: Miguel Cabrera
AL Outstanding Pitcher: David Price
AL Outstanding Rookie: Mike Trout
AL Comeback Player of the Year: Adam Dunn
NL Outstanding Player: Andrew McCutchen
NL Outstanding Pitcher: R.A. Dickey
NL Outstanding Rookie: Todd Frazier
NL Comeback Player of the Year: Buster Posey
Marvin Miller Man of the Year: Chipper Jones
After 18 years, 12 winning seasons, seven postseason runs and three World Championships, Dave Righetti is no longer a pitching coach for the Giants. He was removed from his post on Saturday, when the team announced a few reassignments as they shake up their coaching staff. Heading into the 2018 season, Righetti will serve as special assistant to general manager Bobby Evans, former bullpen coach Mark Gardner will step into a similar special assistant role to “assist in pitching evaluations,” and former assistant hitting coach Steve Decker will take a special assistant role in baseball operations.
According to MLB.com’s Chris Haft, Righetti was the longest-tenured pitching coach in the big leagues. He helped shape the careers of notable Giants’ aces like Madison Bumgarner, Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain — all Cy Young contenders (and, in Lincecum’s case, a two-time winner) at various points in their careers. He was there to assist Ryan Vogelsong during his stunning mid-career comeback in San Francisco. He helped newcomers like Chris Stratton and Ty Blach flourish even as the team stumbled to the bottom of the division. He was there to take the credit when a sterling rotation clinched the Giants’ 56-year, drought-snapping championship title in 2010 — and, when things went so horribly south in 2017, he took the blame as well.
Hardly anything went right for the Giants’ pitching staff in 2017. Madison Bumgarner was shelved after sustaining a serious shoulder injury in a dirt bike accident, Johnny Cueto couldn’t shake a cluster of blisters on his right hand and Mark Melancon found it difficult to justify a $62 million paycheck after pitching through an arm injury to four blown losses/saves and a 4.50 ERA. It would be a lot for any pitching coach to stay on top of, and given the team’s rapid descent from 2016 postseason contenders to last-place finishers in 2017, it’s not surprising that Evans felt the need to switch things up.
Successors have yet to be named for Righetti, Gardner or Decker, though Murray hears that the Giants could have interest in former major league pitching coach Jim Hickey. NBC Bay Area’s Alex Pavlovic adds that Evans is searching for someone to “put a new voice” on the pitching staff and will likely target someone who, like Righetti, brings considerable experience to the role.