MLB Playoffs 2017: Choosing an MVP for every team
Los Angeles Dodgers: Justin Turner
For a team that won 104 games in the regular season and finished in the top ten in both OBP and slugging percentage as a team, picking an MVP was hard. Not only do you have rookie sensation Cody Bellinger and 23-year-old Corey Seager to consider, but Clayton Kershaw and Kenley Jansen also posted great seasons.
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With Kershaw only able to log 175 innings this season and Bellinger’s 146 strikeouts, the choice becomes a little clearer.
Turner, who just finished up his seventh full season in the majors, posted a career-best 5.7 WAR in 2017. To do that, the 32-year-old slashed .322/.415/.530 with 21 home runs and 71 RBI. While most are going to say “yeah, but Cody Bellinger hit 39 home runs and drove in 96,” I implore you to look a little deeper. Turner bests Bellinger in batting average by more than 50 points and OBP by 65 points. Turner was able to increase his OBP by drawing 59 walks and only striking out 56 times in 457 at-bats (12.3%).
On the defensive side of the ball, Turner was able to turn in an above average season at third base. In just under 1,000 innings at the hot corner, Turner posted a .969 fielding percentage, slightly better than the .962 league average. Along with that, Turner saved six runs on defense and decreased his number of errors from nine in 2016 to eight this season.
As the postseason gears up, it’s important to see how each teams “MVP” has performed during the postseason. For Turner, the numbers look very good. In 18 career postseason games, Turner has slashed .357/.471/.607 with two home runs and 12 RBI.