The 2022 season was a good one for the Cleveland Guardians. I don’t think there’s a single fan out there that could deny that. They comfortably finished top of the American League Central division with a very nice record of 92-70. They finished third in the entire American League. They beat the Tampa Bay Rays in the Wild Card Series before eventually losing to the New York Yankees in the Division series 3-2. While they may not have gone all the way, they can 100% hold their heads high and be proud of their performance.
With a season like that under their belt and some fantastic baseball delivered to the fans, you can imagine there are a lot of players on this roster that you could look at and say was their best player. It depends entirely on what your criteria are for being the best. Today, we’re going to be taking a look at what sets some of the Guardians players aside from the others and use that to determine which Cleveland Guardian deserves to be the team’s 2022 MVP.There are many baseball fans who think Jose Ramirez is in discussion to be named best player in the world. But did his 2022 performance warrant those compliments? Source: Sports Illustrated
To start with, I want to talk about someone that people may not expect to be first, Shane Bieber. One thing that the Guardians did really well between the 2021 and 2022 seasons was work on their pitching, managing to take almost a full run off of their season ERA, dropping from 4.34 to 3.47. Shane Bieber played a huge part in that after returning from injury. While he may have only posted 8.91 K/9, which was a career low. Shane managed to keep to a 2.88 ERA, that’s over a total of 200 innings while putting up 4.9 fWAR. That puts him in the top 10 in the entirety of the MLB.
Next, obviously, we have to talk about the obvious, José Ramirez. Ramirez was a candidate for the 2022 MVP, the four-time all-star showed just why he was worth his 5 years $124 million extension by putting up 139 wRC+, he swiped 20 bags, and while playing on the defensive side excelling in his 10th season. There’s nothing bad to say about José, really, and he continues to be absolutely excellent and very good value for the 2022 MVP for the Guardians.
Finally, I want to talk about Amed Rosario; while he may not be the best player he’s absolutely an honorable mention. He really did establish himself in the 2022 season as the “everyday player.” He put up a career-high 103 wRC+ while matching his output of 2.4 fWAR from 2021. He is very impressive and showed the fans and the staff around the team that he has a lot to offer.
Ultimately, as I mentioned earlier, there are a lot of outstanding players within this Guardians team right now, too many to mention, we haven’t even talked about Andrés Giménez yet who also impressed this season, but the MVP award for the Cleveland Guardians 2022 season can only realistically go to one man. José Ramirez. The four-time all-star has continued to show the league why he’s considered one of the best in the game right now and he is showing no signs of stopping any time soon. With the right moves and the right guidance, he could help guide the Guardians to what would be a shocking World Series win.
So, with that being said, I think it’s worth taking a quick look at what the experts are saying for the 2023 MLB season. What sort of chance are they giving the Cleveland Guardians and who are the top 5 favorites before the season even starts? If you’re wanting to check out one of the best betting sites in Ohio like Bet365 who currently have a partnership with the Guardians, they will have constantly shifting odds as teams work during the off-season, making trades, etc.
Somewhat surprisingly to me, the Cleveland Guardians are a fair bit down the pecking order here. They are currently the 15th favorite team to go all the way and win the 2023 World Series, if you feel like this is their season you can grab odds of +3000 right now, which would see a $155 return from a $5 stake. Not too bad really and considering they’re actually a great team, doesn’t seem like a terrible idea.
When it comes to the favorites, however, the top 5 are actually kind of self-explanatory, I don’t think there’s a team here that people wouldn’t expect to be here. First there’s the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Houston Astros at +550; That’s a $32.50 return from a $5 stake if you think the Astros could go back to back. Then there’s the New York Yankees at +800, a $45 return from $5 for that one. 4th favorite is the Atlanta Braves who are +900, a $50 return from $5. Then finally, the 5th favorite is technically a 3-way tie, between the Toronto Blue Jays, New York Mets and the San Diego Padres who are all at +1000, that would see a $55 return from $5!For Guardians fans, it has been a long wait for a World Series with the last championship win being in 1948. Could they do it next season? Source: ABG
Guardians fans. How happy were you with this season? Of course, it would have been absolutely beautiful to go all the way and take home the World Series, but I feel like the team has been steadily improving over the last few seasons and look like a constant threat. On their day they have the ability to beat any team in the league, if they can tie down the big boys and maybe tweak a thing or two, the Guardians really could throw up a solid challenge next season.
The real question is, what do the Guardians need to do differently to make that next big step? More of the same will get them so far, but realistically, where is the place they need to strengthen the most? A big home run hitter that can perform when it matters most would be a great start and first baseman has been a bit of a problem position this season, whether they have the time to do anything about that remains to be seen. I truly believe that if they can solve those 2 problems, they will be able to make it to the Championship game minimum.