The Miami Marlins have wrapped up Jose Fernandez's 2013 season, so Fernandez has also closed the book on his 2013 National League Rookie of the Year campaign. While there are some who think he is a guaranteed candidate to win the award, others still believe in the magic of Yasiel Puig. Where does Fernandez's final start leave him in the National League Rookie of the Year Power Rankings? Let's update the list!
1. Jose Fernandez, SP, Miami Marlins
Fernandez is still your leader and, in my mind, still the favorite to win the award right now. Fernandez had another nice performance last night against the Atlanta Braves, and though it was not a spectacle like some of his other starts, it ended with his ERA at 2.19, which ranks second in all of baseball. The numbers are so ridiculous for Fernandez and his success this year that it is difficult to ignore. Fernandez's 12-6 record probably also helps, as does the fact that he has done all of this with strikeouts by the bunch.
The one downside is that the Home Run Watch-gate may have translated into the first bad publicity for Fernandez this season. All throughout the year, he has kept his demeanor well, from his excellent All-Star Game performance to his various fun hijinks off the field and in the dugout. But last night's homer may have been the first time Fernandez was perceived as in the wrong, and that could take some away from his support, no matter how relatively minor the indiscretion was.
2. Yasiel Puig, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers
The problem with Fernandez's candidacy is that Puig is right on his heels. At least by FanGraphs Wins Above Replacement, the two are very close to each other in win totals, and Puig has more than half a month left to go. In addition, he is prominently featured on a division-winning team, though the comfort of Los Angeles's lead may lead to less coverage of the Dodgers rather than more. Either way, the problem of how Fernandez is to overcome the obstacle of Puig's popularity may pale in comparison to Puig's performance conundrum. As I said on Twitter last night:
This is the absolute truth. If Puig performs well down the stretch, he will get the recognition for the award, and there is a decent chance he will have earned it, even with Fernandez's ridiculous year. If Puig does not play well or gets into more trouble, Fernandez's final two months of stellar play may stand out to voters more. #JOSE4ROY will come down to the legend of Puig's final month.
3. Hyun-Jin Ryu, SP, Los Angeles Dodgers
4. Shelby Miller, SP, St. Louis Cardinals
5. Julio Teheran, SP, Atlanta Braves