Mike Trout wins the American League Most Valuable Player Award unanimously

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Angels outfielder Mike Trout has finally won an MVP award. After losing out on the hardware in each of the last two seasons to Miguel Cabrera, Trout was selected unanimously as the American League’s MVP for his superb 2014 campaign. He is the youngest to ever win the award unanimously. Teammates Albert Pujols and Howie Kendrick each received down-ballot votes, finishing 17th and 18th, respectively.

Trout led the league in Wins Above Replacement according to both FanGraphs (7.8) and Baseball Reference (7.9). He hit .287/.377/.561 with 16 stolen bases, 36 home runs, and a league-leading 111 RBI. He also led the league in runs scored with 115.

The 22-year-old Trout inked a six-year, $144.5 million contract extension with the Angels back in March. Given today’s report that the Marlins have discussed a $300 million deal with Giancarlo Stanton, the Trout contract might end up being a heck of a bargain.

Current free agent Victor Martinez finished in second place while Indians outfielder Michael Brantley finished third.

Max Scherzer: ‘There’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions’

Max Scherzer
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MLBPA player representative Max Scherzer sent out a short statement late Wednesday night regarding the ongoing negotiations between the owners and the union. On Tuesday, ownership proposed a “sliding scale” salary structure on top of the prorated pay cuts the players already agreed to back in March. The union rejected the proposal, with many worrying that it would drive a wedge in the union’s constituency.

Scherzer is one of eight players on the MLBPA executive subcommittee along with Andrew Miller, Daniel Murphy, Elvis Andrus, Cory Gearrin, Chris Iannetta, James Paxton, and Collin McHugh.

Scherzer’s statement:

After discussing the latest developments with the rest of the players there’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions. We have previously negotiated a pay cut in the version of prorated salaries, and there’s no justification to accept a 2nd pay cut based upon the current information the union has received. I’m glad to hear other players voicing the same viewpoint and believe MLB’s economic strategy would completely change if all documentation were to become public information.

Indeed, aside from the Braves, every other teams’ books are closed, so there has been no way to fact-check any of the owners’ claims. Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts, for example, recently said that 70 percent of the Cubs’ revenues come from “gameday operations” (ticket sales, concessions, etc.). But it went unsubstantiated because the Cubs’ books are closed. The league has only acknowledged some of the union’s many requests for documentation. Without supporting evidence, Ricketts’ claim, like countless others from team executives, can only be taken as an attempt to manipulate public sentiment.

Early Thursday morning, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that the MLBPA plans to offer a counter-proposal to MLB in which the union would suggest a season of more than 100 games and fully guaranteed prorated salaries. It seems like the two sides are quite far apart, so it may take longer than expected for them to reach an agreement.