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MLB: National League Rookie of the Year Odds, Candidates, Picks

Well, it’s that time of the year. We are all sitting around, enjoying the playoffs, and looking back at the regular season to compare the stats of the players who didn’t make the playoffs this year, but who will be household names for years to come. For consistency with the American League Rookie of the Year, we will look at the top three candidates for the award, when, in all honestly, this is going to be a two-horse race, with the outcome maybe not as close as we would like. Let’s take a look at the future stars of MLB.

Jonathan India, Cincinnati Reds (-1350)

Oct 1, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Cincinnati Reds second baseman Jonathan India (6) smiles in the batting cage before the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 1, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Cincinnati Reds second baseman Jonathan India (6) smiles in the batting cage before the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

In the first round of the 2018 MLB Amateur Draft, the Cincinnati Reds selected Jonathan India 5th overall. On April 1, 2021, India made his major league debut, after absolutely flying through the minor leagues. Since making his debut, India had a huge impact on the Reds and their push for the 2021 postseason, while ultimately fell short

India played in 150 games and made 531 plate appearances. In those 150 games, India posted a slash line of .269/.376/.459 with 21 home runs, two triples, 34 doubles, and 69 runs batted in. The one part of India’s offensive game that needs to improve is the 141 strikeouts that he had during the 2021 season. These numbers equate to a 113 OPS+ and a WAR of 3.9.

Trevor Rogers, Miami Marlins (+775)

Sep 15, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Miami Marlins starting pitcher Trevor Rogers (28) sits in the field after giving up an RBI single to Washington Nationals left fielder Lane Thomas (not pictured) in the fourth inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 15, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Miami Marlins starting pitcher Trevor Rogers (28) sits in the field after giving up an RBI single to Washington Nationals left fielder Lane Thomas (not pictured) in the fourth inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

It’s not ofter that you see a pitcher in contention for the Rookie of the Year Award, but that’s exactly what we have for us this year with the Miami Marlins starter, Trevor Rogers. In the first round of the 2017 MLB Amateur Draft, the Miami Marlins selected Trevor Rogers with the 17th overall pick, Rogers made his MLB Debut on August 25, 2020, but didn’t amass enough service time through the 2020 season to exceed his rookie limits. In 2020, Rogers appeared in 7 games and posted a 1-2 record with a 6.11 ERA in 28 innings pitched. In those 28 innings, Rogers struck out 39, walked 13, and posted an ERA+ of 75.

In his first full season, Rogers appeared in 25 games. In those 25 games, Rogers pitched in 133 innings posting a 7-8 record with a 2.64 ERA. Rogers did strike out 147 batters, while walking only 46 and posted an ERA+ of 158. Those numbers all equate to a 3.3 WAR for the 2021 season.

Patrick Wisdom, Chicago Cubs (+1750)

Sep 21, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Griffin Jax (83) reacts after hitting Chicago Cubs third baseman Patrick Wisdom (not pictured) with a pitch during the third inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 21, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Griffin Jax (83) reacts after hitting Chicago Cubs third baseman Patrick Wisdom (not pictured) with a pitch during the third inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports

Patrick Wisdom is the “old man” of the group, as he is 30-years-old. Wisdom was drafted in the first round with the 52nd overall pick by the St. Louis Cardinals. Wisdom made his MLB debut on August 12, 2018, with the St. Louis Cardinals. After playing 32 games for the Cardinals in 2018, Widsom was let go and picked up by the Texas Rangers, where he played in only nine games during the 2019 season. After the 2019 season, Wisdom was let go again, then being picked up by the Chicago Cubs, where he only played in two games during the 2020 season. This little amount of playing time is why Patrick Wisdom was still considered a rookie playing for the Chicago Cubs in 2021.

in 2021, Patrick Wisdom finally exceed his rookie limits. Wisdom had his first real opportunity, appearing in 106 games for the Cubs. In those 106 games, Wisdom posted a slash line of .231/.305/.518 with 28 home runs, 13 doubles, and 61 runs batted in. Those numbers equate to an OPS+ of 112 and a WAR of 2.3. Not bad for a player who spent his first three years in the league playing for three different teams.

Expert Picks

Where it would be awesome to see Patrick Wisdom win the award after the hard-fought road that he had to ensure to even make it to where he is today, it is highly unlikely. Jonathan India is going to run away with the National League Rookie of the Year Award, and unlike the American League race, it’s not even going to be close. India was an amazing player in College, flew through the Minor League, and now is making an impact with the Major League Club. Jonathan India is a name that people aren’t just going to hear this year for winning the Rookie of the year, but a name that will be heard for years to come as he becomes a superstar in this league.

I’m Brian Handzel. I’m a huge baseball fan. On any given night you can catch me watching a game, whether it is MLB, MiLB, College, or local summer leagues. As my wife says, I’m obsessed with the game. I’m even a credentialed media member for the Syracuse Mets, the Triple-A affiliate of the New York Mets. When I’m not watching baseball I’m spending time with my wife and two children, and secretly trying to get them to enjoy the game as well.

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