How long until a National contends for a BBWAA award again?

Davey Martinez dugout red

Awards Week wraps up tonight with the announcement of the two leagues’ MVP winners, and you’re forgiven if you haven’t been paying attention to this stuff. Because, really, why would you this year?

Unless some rogue writer gave Joey Meneses a 10th place MVP vote, the Nationals will have been shut out entirely from discussion about the four major awards handed out annually by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America: Most Valuable Player, Cy Young, Rookie of the Year and Manager of the Year. Not a single member of the team will have received a vote on anybody’s ballot for any of the awards (unless you want to count Juan Soto or Josh Bell, who spent four months in D.C. before they were traded to San Diego).

That simply hasn’t been the case around here in a very long time.

How long? Not since 2008 have the Nationals failed to receive at least one down-ballot vote for National League MVP. In fact, at least two players had received votes each of the last six years, with three or more players receiving votes in three of those years.

The Nats have had only one actual MVP in their existence: Bryce Harper, the unanimous selection in 2015 despite the team’s disappointing record. But they’ve always found themselves in the discussion, with top-three finishes in several other years and almost always at least one top-10 finisher.

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Hyde is runner-up for AL Manager of the Year by BBWAA

brandon hyde walking black

The Orioles’ rise from 110-loss team in 2021 to playoff contender this summer, their record settling above .500 to shock the industry, couldn’t launch manager Brandon Hyde toward another award.

Hyde was runner-up tonight to the Guardians’ Terry Francona for the American League’s Manager of the Year in voting by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. He finished first last month in The Sporting News balloting.

In his fourth season with the Orioles, Hyde guided the Orioles to an 83-79 record for one of the greatest turnarounds in baseball history. He received nine first-place votes, nine second and seven third for 79 points.

Francona, who won the AL Central with the youngest roster in the league, received 17 first-place votes and nine second for 112 points. The Mariners’ Scott Servais was third with one first-place, eight second and 14 third.

Dusty Baker, whose Astros won the World Series, was fourth with three first-place, three second and seven third. The Yankees’ Aaron Boone was fifth with one second and one third. The Rays’ Kevin Cash, who won it the past two seasons, was sixth with one third-place vote.

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Hall of Fame ballot loaded with big names and controversy

Hall of Fame ballot loaded with big names and controversy
If you glanced at the 2022 Hall of Fame ballot that was released Monday hoping to find some prominent Nationals representation, you were sorely disappointed. Sure, Jonathan Papelbon made the list, but you probably aren't going to find too many Nats fans excited to relive those regrettable 12 months in club history. You'll just have to wait another year, because among the players eligible to make the 2023 ballot is none other than Jayson Werth. We'll have some fun with that one when the time...
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More gains for minor league players, plus other notes

More gains for minor league players, plus other notes
As the second year of play since the restructuring of the minor leagues is set to begin in 2022, there will be a first coming for the players. The big league teams will be responsible for housing the minor league players and covering utilities. Major League Baseball issued a press release on Thursday announcing these plans. One big headache and expense is now off the plates of the minor leaguers. Coupled with the modest salary increases that began in 2021, the players are making some financial...
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Soto named a finalist for NL MVP

Soto named a finalist for NL MVP
Nationals outfielder Juan Soto is one of three finalists for the National League Most Valuable Player, his status announced this evening during an MLB Network broadcast devoted to unveiling finalists for awards voted on by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Soto is joined by two other noted sluggers, the Phillies' Bryce Harper and the Padres' Fernando Tatis Jr. The winner will be announced live on MLB Network on Thursday, Nov. 18. This is the second time Soto has been announced as...
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O's Ryan Mountcastle will not win Rookie of the Year

O's Ryan Mountcastle will not win Rookie of the Year
He may have ranked first among all American League qualifying rookies in homers this year and second in RBIs, but the Orioles' Ryan Mountcastle will not be the club's seventh Rookie of the Year winner in the AL. When the three finalists for the Baseball Writers' Association of America award, to be announced Monday, were announced last night, he was not among them. For me, that was surprising. So the one Orioles player who we thought had a chance to contend for or even win one of the major...
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Learning more about Mountcastle, Mullins' chances at awards

Learning more about Mountcastle, Mullins' chances at awards
The finalists for 2021 Baseball Writers' Association of America awards will be announced tonight at 6 p.m. on MLB Network. When Ryan Mountcastle finds out whether he's in the top three in voting for Rookie of the Year in the American League. Mountcastle was chosen Rookie of the Year by his peers in the Major League Baseball Players Association's Players Choice Awards, finishing ahead of the Rays' Randy Arozarena and the Rangers' Adolis García. They could be finalists for the BBWAA...
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My 2021 Hall of Fame ballot

My 2021 Hall of Fame ballot
There's no greater privilege in this business than serving as a Hall of Fame voter. And there's no greater feeling than seeing one of baseball's greatest get the news of his election, knowing you played a small role in making it happen. So it's always disappointing to put the time and effort into voting in a given year and then find out nobody was elected. Unfortunately, it does happen from time to time. Not by design, but by a confluence of events including an excess number of players...
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Nats' lack of award candidates in 2020 was telling

Nats' lack of award candidates in 2020 was telling
Not that you need any reminders about how disappointing 2020 was for the Nationals, but here's one more just for the sake of it: They didn't have any finalists for any of the four major end-of-season awards. Nope, nobody from the Nats finished in the top three in voting for National League MVP, Cy Young, Rookie of the Year or Manager of the Year. That's not something that has happened around these parts in quite some time. The last time the Nationals didn't have a top-three finisher for any...
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Soto finishes fifth, Turner is seventh in MVP voting

Soto finishes fifth, Turner is seventh in MVP voting
Juan Soto finished fifth and Trea Turner finished seventh in voting for National League MVP released tonight, garnering recognition for a season in which the Nationals as a team disappointed but their two biggest offensive stars produced as well as they have in their respective careers. Soto led the league in a host of offensive categories but didn't play as much as most of his competitors due to a positive coronavirus test and a sore elbow. Turner put together elite offensive numbers to...
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Previewing tonight's Hall of Fame election reveal

Previewing tonight's Hall of Fame election reveal
It's been a rough week for baseball, unless you're of the opinion that bad publicity is better than no publicity. Regardless, the Astros' sign-stealing scandal - and the still-falling domino effects of it - has shown us some of the worst baseball has to offer. Which makes today a good day, because we're going to get to experience some of the very best baseball has to offer. (Plus some controversy, because this sport simply isn't allowed to just celebrate the good things without having a...
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Modern Era Committee selects Simmons, Miller for Hall of Fame

Modern Era Committee selects Simmons, Miller for Hall of Fame
SAN DIEGO - Catcher Ted Simmons, who played in the shadows of Johnny Bench, Carlton Fisk and Gary Carter, will join the three backstops in the Hall of Fame in July. Simmons, who caught at least 150 games in eight different seasons, was voted into Cooperstown by the Hall's Modern Era Committee Sunday at baseball's Winter Meetings. The Modern Era Committee, one of four rotating committees that considers various periods, also voted in Marvin Miller, the pioneering union executive that led the...
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Rendon finishes a distant third in NL MVP vote

Rendon finishes a distant third in NL MVP vote
The best season of Anthony Rendon's career was good enough for a third-place finish in a hotly contested MVP race. Rendon was revealed tonight as the third-place finisher, behind winner Cody Bellinger and runner-up Christian Yelich, in this year's National League MVP balloting. Bellinger won the award, receiving 19 first-place votes and 362 total points. Yelich finished right behind him with 10 first-place votes and 317 total points. Rendon received 242 points and one first-place vote among...
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Scherzer finishes third, Strasburg fifth in NL Cy Young vote

Scherzer finishes third, Strasburg fifth in NL Cy Young vote
Jacob deGrom won his second straight National League Cy Young Award this evening, the Mets ace honored again for a season that while short on wins was dominant in every other capacity. In receiving 29 of 30 first place votes and 202 total points, deGrom easily bested Dodgers left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu (one first-place vote, 88 points) and Nationals right-hander Max Scherzer (72 points). Scherzer's third place finish means he's been in the top five in Cy Young Award voting for the seventh...
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Martinez finishes fifth in NL Manager of the Year voting

Martinez finishes fifth in NL Manager of the Year voting
At this point, two weeks into November, nobody would dare suggest Davey Martinez didn't play a major role in leading the Nationals to their first World Series title and didn't deserve to be honored for it. But all ballots for National League Manager of the Year were submitted before the start of the postseason, and on the final day of September, Martinez's work hadn't yet been fully appreciated. Which explains why the Nats skipper finished a distant fifth in voting that was revealed...
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Robles finishes sixth in NL Rookie of the Year voting

Robles finishes sixth in NL Rookie of the Year voting
In a normal year, Victor Robles' performance might have been enough to warrant serious consideration for Rookie of the Year honors. This, however, was no normal year, which meant the Nationals center fielder wound up well down the list in voting among his fellow first-year players. Robles finished sixth in the race for 2019 National League Rookie of the Year, an award that went to Mets first baseman Pete Alonso in overwhelming fashion. Alonso, who set a new major league record for home runs by...
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Handicapping the AL candidates for postseason awards

Handicapping the AL candidates for postseason awards
The Baseball Writers' Association of America this week announces its four major postseason awards. Votes have to in before the end of the regular season. Here's an American League primer: AL Rookie of the Year: Orioles lefty John Means wasn't one of the team's top pitching prospects in spring training and started the season in the bullpen. He made the AL All-Star team and was the Orioles' best pitcher, getting 12 of the team's 54 wins. He had 121 strikeouts in 155 innings. He made...
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Rendon and Scherzer are finalists for postseason accolades

Rendon and Scherzer are finalists for postseason accolades
Right-hander Max Scherzer is a finalist for the National League Cy Young Award and third baseman Anthony Rendon is one of three finalists for NL Most Valuable Player, but the Nationals got as many snubs as finalists when the top three finishers for Baseball Writers' Association of America awards were announced live on MLB Network tonight. Manager Davey Martinez wasn't listed among the top three vote-getters for NL Manager of the Year and right-hander Stephen Strasburg was not among from the...
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Dubious performance, link to steroids should keep Bonds, Clemens out of Hall of Fame

Dubious performance, link to steroids should keep Bonds, Clemens out of Hall of Fame
Pitcher Roger Clemens and outfielder Barry Bonds are moving closer to the 75 percent threshold needed for election into the Baseball Hall of Fame, but it is still a mystery as to why they should be in. As a voting member of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, I can't vote for them. I don't understand or agree with the arguments that BBWAA members use to vote for Bonds and Clemens. A vote for Bonds and Clemens is a vote for steroids usage. That means a voter thinks that Clemens'...
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Some trade banter and other notes

Some trade banter and other notes
If the Orioles discuss trading closer Zach Britton - or any prominent player - and then pull off a deal, can it help the team address its biggest need? Will the Orioles get starting pitching in return? That would be desirable for the Orioles. With just two pitchers set for the 2018 rotation in Dylan Bundy and Kevin Gausman, they are going to need to add starters any way they can, and the trade front is one avenue that could work. The potential issue is that any contending team that wants to add...
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