Of course Boston fans know one of them: outfielder Fred Lynn in his memorable 1975 campaign. The other was Seattle’s Ichiro Suzuki in 2001. Current Los Angeles Angels rookie outfielder Mike Trout could make it a trio as he is now the 5-2 co-favorite at Bovada to win the 2012 AL MVP award.
Trout wasn't even a betting option in the spring as he didn't make the big club heading out of spring training. But since Trout debuted on May 28, the Angels, who were 6-14 entering that night's game, have taken off and lead the AL wild-card standings at 48-38. Trout leads the American League in batting at .341 and in steals with 26. He also has 12 homers and 40 RBIs and has made several highlight-reel catches.
The last Angel to win the AL MVP was Vladimir Guerrero in 2004, and Trout could give the Halos a sweep of the major awards in the Junior Circuit as he is obviously the Rookie of the Year favorite and teammate Jered Weaver is the 5-2 Cy Young favorite at the book. The Tigers had a sweep of the Cy Young and MVP awards last year, but that was done by one guy: pitcher Justin Verlander.
Co-favored with Trout at 5-2 is Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano, who bombed out Monday night (and booed) in his attempt to repeat as the Home Run Derby champ at the All-Star Game. Cano is hitting .313 with 20 homers and 51 RBIs. Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton is just behind Trout and Cano at 3-1. He leads all of baseball with 27 homers (tied with Toronto-s Jose Bautista) and 75 RBIs.
The preseason favorite for AL MVP was another Angel: Albert Pujols. But the three-time NL MVP with St. Louis has been a disappointment in his first season in the AL, hitting .268 with 14 homers and 51 RBIs. He is no longer a betting option.
The Red Sox had three MVP betting candidates in the spring in Adrian Gonzalez, Jacoby Ellsbury and David Ortiz, who was one of the longest shots on the board. Gonzo has been massively disappointing in 2012, hitting .286 with six homers and 45 RBIs, while Ellsbury hasn't played since April 13 due to a separated shoulder. However, he should return for this weekend's series with the Rays. Big Papi is now at 15-1 after hitting .312 with 22 homers and 57 RBIs in the first half. It seems a lock he will have his best season since 2007.
In the National League, Pittsburgh outfielder Andrew McCutchen is the new betting favorite at 7-2. McCutchen is the sole reason that the Pirates stunningly lead the NL Central as they look for their first winning record in 20 years.
McCutchen leads Pittsburgh in every offensive category and is tops in baseball with a .362 average. It's possible, although far-fetched, that McCutchen could win the Triple Crown as he is tied for fourth in the NL with 18 homers and tied for third with 60 RBIs. The Pirates haven't had an MVP winner since Barry Bonds left town after winning the 1992 award — not coincidentally the Pirates' last winning season and playoff berth.
Milwaukee's Ryan Braun (13-2) is the reigning NL MVP winner and he could repeat. He leads the NL in homers with 24 and is second with 61 RBIs. He is also hitting .306 despite little protection in that Brewers lineup.
The preseason NL favorite was Cincinnati first baseman Joey Votto, and he is still among the favorites at 9-2 — along with New York's David Wright. Votto is fifth in the NL with a .348 average and leads all of baseball with 35 doubles and an OPS of 1.087.