From the South Side mailbag:
I see your precious rookie Fields only got 1 vote in ROY consideration. It must hurt to know even your new players are getting screwed, but at least they’re ready for the lifetime of being ignored while playing for the Sox, no?
– Todd, Evanston, IL
There’s nothing wrong with Josh Fields not winning the Rookie of the Year. In fact, as vile and reprehensible as the Red Sox are as an organization, it’s hard to say there was a better rookie in 2007 than Dustin Pedroia. Delmon Young, Brian Bannister, Pedroia – these are first-year players who put up great seasons, and it would be petty to begrudge them their recognition simply because they finished ahead of our own fledgling trade bait.
No, the problem isn’t that Fields didn’t win; the problem is that Fields even received a vote in the first place.
Sure, he hit 23 homers. Sure, he knocked in 67. Sure, he did a fine job filling in for the injured Joe Crede. Most of Fields’ success, however, is crippled by the fact that he only played in 100 games. You can argue all you want that he projects to a 35 HR season, but by that same logic Lance Broadway should have received serious Cy Young consideration for his projected 277 strikeouts and ERA that would’ve projected, at the rate it was already dropping, to roughly a 0.06.
Keep in mind that Fields’ season also projected to striking out 202 times while only drawing 56 walks, and still finishing the season with a .244 average, not to mention the 18 errors that would’ve translated to as well. When all is said and done, sports projections really mean nothing.
The logical explanation is that someone out there in the MLB voting pool likes to vote for what could have been rather than what actually was, and also has some extreme bias towards the Good Guys.
My money’s on Hawk.