From SABR member Tracy Ringolsby at MLB.com on November 6, 2014:
When the Baseball Writers Association of America created the MVP awards in 1931 there was no problem with the voting being completed prior to the first pitch of the post-season. It made sense to not let a short series carry too much weight in evaluating a season-long effort.
Times, however, change.
The post-season no longer is a blip on the screen.
Oh, teams can be eliminated in just one game, but for a team to take each step in October and win a world championship it is possible for it to play 20 games.
A key is the word Valuable. It is not the Most Outstanding Player. [Or] the Best Offensive Player.
Major League Baseball, with the Hank Aaron Award, and the Major League Baseball Players Association, with the Player Choice Awards, have created honors based off the pure statistical accomplishments of a hitter.
The BBWAA presents the Most Valuable Player.
The ultimate value in baseball is winning, and if the award is based on a player’s value the decision should rest on how valuable he was to his team’s success. Winning the World Series is the ultimate sign of a team’s success.
That aspect, however, has been diminished in terms of the annual presentation of the Most Valuable Player awards in the NL and AL each time the post-season has expanded.
Read the full article here: http://ringolsby.mlblogs.com/2014/11/06/202/
Originally published: November 7, 2014. Last Updated: November 7, 2014.