Chicago Cubs: Kris Bryant named unanimous NL Rookie of the Year


Cubs’ Kris Bryant wins NL Rookie of the Year unanimously

Remember when the Chicago Cubs were holding the back the crown jewel in Kris Bryant? How some people were questioning if it would cost the Cubs before the season was over by not bringing him up out of Spring Training? Yeah, me either. Bryant shook off the “late” callup–playing with a chip on his shoulder as he ran away with the Jackie RobinsonNL rookie of the Year award unanimously.

Bryant hit .275 with 26 home runs and 99 RBI’s to go along with a .369 on-base percentage and a .488 slugging percentage. His on-base, slugging an OPS led all rookies, and his 26 home runs were tied for the lead among rookies. Matt Duffy of the San Francisco Giants came in second in the voting.

For Bryant, it wasn’t how he started but how he finished. After a less than sparkling debut against the San Diego Padres with an 0-for-4 with four strikeouts. In the final two months of the season when the Cubs needed him most? He batted .323 with 12 home runs and 39 RBI’s.

Bryant met the hype that was created with a season to match. For a team expected to lean on their young players, Bryant was an ideal start to the plan. While he was the first–and clearly the best–other rookies arriving in Chicago took some of the pressure off Bryant as they were able to feed off each other over the course of the season.

"“Everybody struggled through the season, and we leaned on each other. As young guys, we brought ourselves together and learned from one another, and they (the Cubs) made the learning curve a lot easier for us.” – Mark Gonzales, Chicago Tribune"

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The performance of Bryant has pushed expectations for 2016 through the roof, as it’s possible the Cubs could add a Cy Young and Manager of the Year award to his NL ROY. Bryant is poised for a spectacular career, and the Cubs for an amazing 2016. Let’s hope this ride continues into next season.