Dodgers News: Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman Miss Out on Hank Aaron Award

The Hank Aaron Award has been presented annually to the best offensive performer in each league since 1999. The awards are selected by a panel of eight Hall of Famers plus a fan vote element. Dodgers Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman were both finalists for the National League award, but neither ended up winning.

It’s not surprising that Paul Goldschmidt won the award in the NL, as he led the league in OPS, OPS+, wRC+, and both versions of offensive WAR. Goldschmidt will likely win the NL MVP Award next week, and his case for the Aaron Award is even stronger, as the other two MVP finalists — Manny Machado and Nolan Arenado — derive a lot of their value from their defense.

Betts had a solid bounce-back season after an injury-plagued 2021, but he was inconsistent and streaky. Still, he led the Dodgers with 35 home runs and tied with Freeman for the team (and league) lead with 117 runs scored. His .873 OPS and 136 OPS+ were both very good, but he was never a real contender to win this award.

Freeman might have had a better shot at the award, though, as he led the league with 117 runs scored, 199 hits, 47 doubles, and a .407 on-base percentage. He was second to Goldschmidt is wRC+ and OPS, and he led the Dodgers in pretty much every offensive category except homers and slugging percentage.

In the American League, Aaron Judge won the Aaron Award for his season in which he set the American League record with 62 home runs.

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