On Strict Constructionism and MVP Voting

This past Thursday, Major League Baseball announced that Miguel Cabrera had won the American League Most Valuable Player Award for the second consecutive season. This year’s race, much like last year’s, basically came down to Cabrera and Angels outfielder Mike Trout, who most observers agree were the top two players in the league. I would have voted for Trout, for the record, but Cabrera had a legitimately fantastic season and I take no issue with his winning the award.

In the wake of the announcement, several of the actual MVP voters have published their ballots, most of which had some combination of Trout and Cabrera in the first two spots. Trout slipped to third on a few ballots, mainly due to the presence of league homer champ Chris Davis; I suppose that’s defensible as well. He also got one fourth-place vote, one fifth-place vote and one seventh-place vote.

That lone seventh-place vote has been the cause of much consternation.

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