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Brandon Webb – Your 2006 IBA Cy Young Award Winner

Each year, the folks at Baseball Prospectus host the Internet Baseball Awards as a means of giving the fans of baseball a voice in the major post-season awards process, even if that process skews sabermetrically.

Below are the Atomic Roadrunners voted for in the big three: MVP, Cy Young, and Rookie of the Year.

Most-Valuable Player voting:

1. Albert Pujols
2. Ryan Howard
3. Carlos Beltran
4. Miguel Cabrera
5. Lance Berkman
6. Chase Utley
7. Jose Reyes
8. David Wright
9. Alfonso Soriano
10. Roy Oswalt
11. Chris Carpenter
12. Jason Bay
13. Brandon Webb
14. Brian McCann
15. Barry Bonds

Mets infielder Jose Reyes (.300/.354/.487, 7.2 WARP3) received significant voting support this year for the first time, and finished seventh. In ninth and tenth were two more newcomers to the top ten: Alfonso Soriano and Astros ace Roy Oswalt, the highest-ranking pitcher (220 IP, 166 K, 8.9 WARP3) in this year’s NL MVP voting.

Cy Young Voting:

1. Brandon Webb
2. Roy Oswalt

3. Chris Carpenter
4. Carlos Zambrano
5. Trevor Hoffman
6. Bronson Arroyo
7. John Smoltz
8. Billy Wagner
9. Roger Clemens
10. Aaron Harang
11. Chris Young
12. Jake Peavy
13. Derek Lowe
14. Tom Glavine
15. Josh Johnson

The 2006 Internet NL Cy Young race was an extremely close three-way hunt in which the Diamondbacks’ Brandon Webb (235 IP, 178 K, 9.2 WARP3) outpolled Astros ace Roy Oswalt and last year’s runner-up, Cardinals pitcher Chris Carpenter (221.2 IP, 184 K, 7.8 WARP3).

Carpenter, who finished second to Roger Clemens in the 2005 voting, appeared on more ballots than either Webb or Oswalt, but finished third as a result of receiving far fewer first-place votes than either of his two major competitors.

Webb had previously earned a fourth-place finish in 2003, the same year he won the Internet NL Rookie of the Year award, but was not a factor in 2004 or 2005. Oswalt’s second-place finish, his highest ever, makes him the only pitcher in baseball to have finished among the top ten in Internet Cy Young voting in five of the last six years–he previously finished sixth in 2005, fifth in 2004, third in 2002, and seventh in 2001.

Rookie of the Year Voting:

1. Hanley Ramirez
2. Dan Uggla
3. Ryan Zimmerman
4. Josh Johnson
5. Prince Fielder
6. Matt Cain
7. Takashi Saito
8. Anibal Sanchez
9. Russell Martin
10. Josh Willingham

Nationals third baseman (and former Roadrunner) Ryan Zimmerman (.287/.351/.471, 8.1 WARP3) finished third, and was less of a surprise, but hitting .296 with a .357 OBP and a .471 SLG while playing sparkling defense was still much more than expected for a player out of college less than a year.  The Brewers’ Prince Fielder met all expectations placed upon his top-prospect status, and still managed fifth place, after tiring towards the end of the season.

Interesting to note that of the top ten rookies, only four were protected from the 2005 season in the WBRL: Zimmerman (AaRr), Fielder (AaRr), Cain (Shoeless Jews) and Willingham (Get Off Kong!).  Of the rest, only Russell Martin and Josh Johnson were in their current organization at the end of last season.  The rest came from AL trades (Ramirez and Sanchez in the same trade from Boston), Saito from Japan, and Uggla from the Diamondbacks in the Rule 5 draft.  Five of the ten top rookies were on the Marlins – 1, 2, 4, 8 and 10.