In a likely preview of the results of the BBWAA Rookie of the Year Award results, Marlins right-hander Jose Fernandez captured the top rookie honors from Baseball America. The last Dodger to win the award was Hideo Nomo in 1995.
Puig hit .319/.391/.534 with 19 home runs and 21 doubles in 104 games, and might have given a Fernandez a run for his money over a full season. Puig also hit .333/.366/.410 in 10 playoff games. He won Rookie of the Month and Player of the Month honors in June, hitting .436/.467/.713 with seven home runs in his very first month in the big leagues. But as Matt Eddy wrote, adjustments were key after that:
Pitchers succeeded in expanding Puig’s strike zone early in the year, but he stabilized his hitting approach in August and September, batting .273/.373/.487 with 21 extra-base hits in 54 games and a workable 24-to-46 walk-to-strikeout ratio.
Eddy also said Puig and the Rays' Wil Myers "will both be patrolling right field for a long time while being annual threats to win the home run crown."
Ryu lived up to expectations and then some for the Dodgers in 2013, going 14-8 with a 3.00 ERA in 30 starts, with 154 strikeouts and 49 walks in 192 innings. Including the postseason, Ryu walked 12 batters in his final 14 starts, with 66 strikeouts during that span.
Ryu, 26, led rookies in innings pitched, but his most impressive stat might have gone unnoticed. Per Eddy:
Opponents succeeded on only one of three steal attempts despite Ryu’s heavy diet of changeups (22 percent of the time), sliders (14) and curves (10).
That lone steal was by Dexter Fowler on April 30. Only two more runners attempted to run on Ryu in his final 24 starts — Andres Torres on May 5 and Donovan Solano on Aug. 19 — and both were thrown out. The last Dodgers pitcher with at least 20 starts and no more than one stolen base allowed was Johnny Podres, who allowed no steals in three attempts in 1965.
BBWAA awards finalists will be announced on Nov. 5 on the MLB Network, with Rookies of the Year awarded on Nov. 11.