Reds' Votto Wins NL MVP Award; Huff Finishes 7th

Reds' Votto Wins NL MVP Award; Huff Finishes 7th

Nov. 22, 2010
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NEW YORK (APCSN) Cincinnati's Joey Votto was overwhelmingly elected the National League's Most Valuable Player on Monday, ending the two-year reign of Albert Pujols.Votto, a first baseman who helped the Reds reach the postseason for the first time in 15 years, received 31 of 32 first-place votes and 443 points in voting announced by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.Votto was a first-time All-Star, finishing second in the NL in batting average at .324 and third in homers (37) and RBIs (113). He led the NL in slugging percentage (.600) and topped the major leagues in on-base percentage (.424).Pujols, the St. Louis Cardinals' first baseman, was second with the remaining first-place vote and 279 points after winning the award in 2005, 2008 and 2009. He batted .312 and led the NL in homers (42) and RBIs (118).Colorado's Carlos Gonzalez was third with 240 points after winning the NL batting title with a .336 average. San Diego's Adrian Gonzalez (197) was fourth, followed by Colorado's Troy Tulowitzki (132) and Philadelphia pitcher Roy Halladay (130).The Giants were well represented with three players in the top 15. Aubrey Huff finished seventh with 70 points. Buster Posey finished 11th (40) and Brian Wilson closed in 13th (28). Only Philadelphia had more players who received votes (4).
Balloting was completed before he went 1 for 10 with one RBI in the first-round playoff loss to Philadelphia.He joined Ernie Lombardi (1938), Bucky Walters (1939), Frank McCormick (1940), Frank Robinson (1961), Johnny Bench (1970 and 1972), Pete Rose (1973), Joe Morgan (1975-76), George Foster (177) and Barry Larkin (1995) as Reds to win the award. The Reds' 12 MVPs are tied with the Giants for second in the NL behind the Cardinals (17). In the AL, the New York Yankees have won 20.The AL winner will be announced Thursday. Josh Hamilton of Texas is the front-runner.Pujols has 10 straight top 10 finishes. His three wins and four second-place finishes matched those of Cardinals Hall of Famer Stan Musial.Votto, a bargain with a 525,000 salary, will be eligible for arbitration for the first time. Neither Votto nor Gonzalez (406,000) had MVP bonus provisions. Pujols gets 100,000 for finishing second. By finishing fourth, Adrian Gonzalez gets a 100,000 raise to 6.3 million next season.Born in Toronto, he becomes the third Canadian-born MVP, following Colorado's Larry Walker (1997) and Minnesota's Justin Morneau (2006).

Dusty chooses son's graduation over Nationals game against Padres

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Dusty chooses son's graduation over Nationals game against Padres

WASHINGTON — Dusty Baker will miss the Washington Nationals weekend series against the San Diego Padres to attend his son Darren’s graduation.

Baker said he will rejoin Washington when it begins a three-game series in San Francisco on Monday, near Baker’s offseason home. Bench coach Chris Speier will assume managerial duties against the Padres.

Baker’s son Darren is graduating from Jesuit High School in Carmichael, California. He’s committed to play college baseball at Cal.

As a 3-year-old bat boy, Darren was rescued from a potential home plate collision by J.T. Snow in Game 5 of the 2002 World Series between Baker’s Giants and the Angels.

Myers: 'It's painful' that Kerr not able to treasure being in NBA Finals

Myers: 'It's painful' that Kerr not able to treasure being in NBA Finals

OAKLAND -- Warriors coach Steve Kerr is no closer to resuming full-time duties than he was a week ago, or even a month ago.

Out since April 23, when he announced he was taking a leave of absence to address chronic pain in the wake of multiple back surgeries nearly two years ago, Kerr has been a constant presence the past two weeks but not on the bench during games.

“He’s doing everything but coaching, but at this point, he’s not able to coach,” general manager Bob Myers said Thursday after practice. “I wish could say that he was. I’m sure he wishes he could as well. But that’s where we are.

“If something changes and he feels better, I’ll sit here or, better -- he would sit here -- and tell you. But right now, I can’t say that he’s going to be coaching.”

Though Kerr did not address media Thursday, he indicated earlier this week that he would be comfortable going into the NBA Finals, which begin June 1, with acting head coach Mike Brown at the helm.

“We’re 12-0,” Kerr told NBCSportsBayArea.com. “I feel great about where the team is. I know we can play better. I think the challenge we’re about to face, one way or the other, is going to take us to another level.”

The Warriors under Kerr finished the regular season with a league-best 67-15 mark, earning the No. 1 overall seed for the playoffs. Kerr coached Games 1 and 2 of the first round against Portland before surrendering head coaching duties to Brown.

The Warriors are 10-0 since Brown took over, 27-1 over their last 28 games since March 11.

Still, they would like Kerr to regain health and join them in their quest for a second championship in three years.

“It’s hard for me; I’m kind of in this basketball mode,” Myers said. “But he’s a person and he’s not feeling well. And that’s what makes it hard. More than how it reflects on our team is how he’s feeling that makes it very difficult to have to sit here and say that the man that’s hugely responsible for us being in The Finals for three years in a row, in a moment that he should be treasuring, can’t do it.

“It’s painful. And I know it’s painful for him, more than anybody. And I wish and he wishes and I’m sure you guys do, too, that there was something that could get him there. But right now, we’re not at that point.”