Baseball is back and the first full week is in the books. The excitement of the season picked up right where it left off and the drama has surely followed. We have seen Freddie Freeman homer against his former team and we have seen Clayton Kershaw be taken out of the game after 7 perfect innings. Speaking of perfect games, while not in the MLB, we also saw Chiba Lotte Marines’ pitcher Roki Sasaki be removed in the 8th inning of a perfect game after throwing 9 perfect frames his previous outing. Baseball continues to excite, and with excitement comes fresh faces in the sport. Let’s check out the way too early American and National League MVP winners so far, according to me.
NL Rookie of the Year – Seiya Suzuki / Chicago Cubs / OF
Seiya Suzuki has finally landed in the MLB after spending 9 seasons with the Hiroshima Toyo Carp in Japan. While there, Suzuki slashed .315/.414/.570 while hitting 182 HR over 902 games. Suzuki has continued his success with the Cubs slashing .429/.564/.929 with 4 HR. While this is an extremely small sample size in the majors, that is the entire point of this being a way too early prediction. The recent success for Suzuki might not be a surprise for baseball fans who knew of his history, but for the casual fan, Suzuki is someone to be excited about for the coming years.
AL Rookie of the Year – Steven Kwan / Cleveland Guardians / OF
If Moneyball was made about the 2022 season so far, then Steven Kwan would be Scott Hatteberg. The best thing about Steven Kwan, is that he gets on base. In fact, Kwan reached base 15 times in his first four games, the first time that has happened since 1901. Steven Kwan has such a good eye that he saw 116 pitches before finally swinging and missing at a pitch! Do I think that Steven Kwan will keep up this pace the rest of the season? No, probably not. However, one of Kwan’s best abilities is the ability to get on base and that will only continue to get better as he gets more at bats.
Expect a similar ranking once a month, as sample sizes increase, players will reach their expectations. But until then, it is always fun to predict things after only a two week period of time. Make sure to follow Diamond Digest on all of our socials and if you want some more hot takes, follow me on twitter! @JoeKoetters1