The USA Today Minor League Player of the Year Award is an award that exists, and Michael Pineda might win it! Or he might not. It is apparently at least in part up to you - the fan - to vote early, and on time, and late for the winner. This always goes well.
Anyway, go vote for Pineda. These awards may not mean a whole hell of a lot to us as fans, but I assure you they mean a lot to the players, and I, for one, would love to keep Pineda as happy as possible.
Or, if you're going to be an objective dick about it, here's the competition, from which you can make your choice:
- Michael Pineda. 21, SP, 135.2 innings between AA/AAA, 149 K, 33 BB, 3.05 ERA
- Jeremy Hellickson. 23, SP, 144 innings between AAA/Majors, 148 K, 39 BB, 2.31 ERA
- Domonic Brown. 22, OF, .327/.391/.589 between AA/AAA, struggled in Philly in limited time
- Mike Moustakas. 21, 3B, .322/.373/.604 between AA/AAA
- Freddie Freeman. 20, 1B, .313/.375/.520 in AAA
The winner will be announced some time in early September. I don't know that Pineda is the best candidate of the five, but he is the most Mariner, a point which hasn't been getting enough attention.
The first and only Mariner to win this award in its 22-year history was Tino Martinez in 1990, when he...slugged .499 with Calgary? What was that all about? Slow year.