On Tuesday evening, the Toronto Blue Jays announced through their Twitter account that first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr was the winner of the inaugural Juan Marichal Award as the top Dominican player in Major League Baseball.
The 2021 season was a breakout season for the 22-year old Guerrero Jr who led the league in runs (123), home runs (48), On Base Percentage (.401), Slugging Percentage (.601), OPS (1.002), and total bases (363). On defense, he took enormous strides at first base as well. In 2020, he looked lost at first base and now looks as though there could be some Gold Glove Awards in his future.
The award was announced a couple of days ago and Guerrero Jr received 97 out of 100 first-place votes, beating out Fernando Tatis Jr who received two first-place votes, and Juan Soto who received the final first-place vote. Teammate Teoscar Hernandez finished fifth in voting for the award after setting career highs in almost every offensive category including home runs (32), RBI (116), and posting a slash line of .296/.346/.524.
Toronto Blue Jays’ first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. takes home the first-ever Juan Marichal Award for the Most Outstanding Dominican Player playing in the United States.
This is the first year the award has been handed out and is named after Juan Marichal, who played 16 seasons in the major leagues between 1960 and 1975. Marichal won 243 games, which included six 20-win seasons (leading the league twice), and was a ten-time all-star. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1983.
This will likely not be the final award for Guerrero Jr. this offseason as he will most definitely take home the Silver Slugger Award as the American League’s top offensive first baseman. The American League MVP Award is coming down to either Guerrero or Angels two-way player Shohei Ohtani. Ohtani finished with 46 home runs and 100 RBI while posting a slash line of .257/.372/.592, and also started 23 games on the mound going 9-2 with a 3.18 ERA.
Do you think Guerrero Jr can take home the American League MVP Award over Ohtani?