11/13/2013 10:00 A.M. ET
Gaudy power numbers make Davis MVP-worthy
By Brittany Ghiroli / MLB.com
BALTIMORE -- The case for Orioles first baseman Chris Davis winning the American League's Most Valuable Player Award this season is simple: power.
No player came close to Davis' eye-popping 53 home runs and 138 RBIs, the former of which established a new club record. A first-year All Star who collected the most votes of any player, Davis was a Gold Glove finalist and won the AL's Silver Slugger Award earlier this offseason in recognition of his gaudy power numbers.
Still, Davis -- named the Most Valuable Oriole this season -- is viewed as the underdog for the AL MVP Award.
Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera, last year's Triple Crown winner, won both the AL Outstanding Player and the overall Player of the Year Awards in the Players' Choice Awards -- both over Davis -- after leading baseball in batting average (.348), on-base percentage (.442) and slugging percentage (.636). Cabrera is expected to take home top honors in the Baseball Writers' Association of America's AL MVP Award on Thursday, although Davis is his chief competition. Mike Trout of the Angels, who hit 27 homers and collected 97 RBIs, will likely finish third.
The winner will be revealed Thursday at 6 p.m. ET on MLB Network and MLB.com.
So, does Davis have what it takes to surpass Cabrera? It's certainly worthy of an argument. While Detroit had Prince Fielder and a more balanced lineup to go with a premier starting rotation that helped it advance the to the AL Championship Series, it was Davis who often kept the O's playoff hopes afloat.
Cabrera, who hit 44 homers with 137 RBIs, has long been considered one of baseball's most dangerous hitters. Davis, who hit his way into history in 2013, deserves to be in the conversation, as there's no telling where Baltimore -- which fell out of postseason contention in the final week of the season -- would have been without its first baseman.
Arizona's Paul Goldschmidt, Pittsburgh's Andrew McCutchen and St. Louis' Yadier Molina are the three finalists in the National League.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.