Giancarlo Stanton has been awarded the Hank Aaron award, acknowledging the National League's best hitter for 2014.
Stanton batted .288/.395/.555, leading the league with 37 home runs and coming in second in RBI with 105. Also of note, he raised his on-base percentage 35-40 points over his finishes in previous years. Stanton's counting stats were slightly deflated as he missed the final three weeks after getting hit in the face with a pitch. He's expected to be completely ready for spring training and should once again be relied upon for elite offensive numbers, going early in many fantasy drafts.
Mike Trout has been awarded the Hank Aaron award, acknowledging the American League's best hitter for 2014.
Trout led the American League with 115 runs scored and 111 RBI. He slashed .287/.377/.561, finishing in a tie for third in home runs with Jose Abreu at 36. Many worried about Trout's increased strikeout rate but the results remain elite. Fantasy players will be hard-pressed to do better than Trout with the #1 overall pick in fantasy drafts in 2015.
Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press reports that Joe Maddon is prepared to sit out the 2015 season to wait for the right managing opportunity, according to his agent Alan Nero.
A recent report indicated that Maddon is seeking a contract around five years and $25 million in total, which would make him one of the highest-paid managers in baseball, not far behind Mike Scioscia. Nero added, "Joe’s looking for a big challenge. He’s looking for an organization that’s committed to win." The Cubs have emerged as an early favorite for Maddon's eventual landing spot.
Juan Perez is starting in left field for the Giants in World Series Game 4 on Saturday night against the Royals.
The left-handed Travis Ishikawa has started the first three games of the World Series, but righty Perez gets the nod against Royals left-handed starter Jason Vargas. The Giants' full lineup for Game 4: Gregor Blanco CF, Joe Panik 2B, Buster Posey C, Hunter Pence RF, Pablo Sandoval 3B, Brandon Belt 1B, Juan Perez LF, Brandon Crawford SS, Ryan Vogelsong SP.
The Royals will utilize the same lineup they used in Friday's victory over the Giants in Game 4 on Saturday.
That means that Jarrod Dyson will remain in center field and hit eighth with Lorenzo Cain handling right field defensively and Nori Aoki stowed away on the bench. Ned Yost's moves worked out brilliantly in Game 3 as Cain played a flawless right field and made several plays that Aoki otherwise wouldn't have.