Now that we have baseball, we have future odds on everything from which teams will win the American League West, spoiler, it’s the Houston Astros by a mile, to Rookie of the Year.
Luis Garcia finished second in the voting last year, garnering two first-place votes as he finished well behind Randy Arozarena. In recent history, the Astros have taken home two of the last seven AL Rookie of the Year trophies with Carlos Correa in 2015 and Yordan Alvarez in 2019.
Correa hit .279 with 22 home runs and 68 RBI to win the award, going 14 of 18 on stolen bases, with an OPS+ of 135 and bWAR of 4.8. The now free agent bested Francisco Lindor in points 124.0 to 109.0 in what turned out to be a battle of future superstar shortstops. Correa garnered 17 first place votes to Lindor’s 13.
In 2019, Alvarez lapped the field, garnering all 30 first place votes for 150 points and dwarfing second place John Means of the Baltimore Orioles, who rolled in with 53 points. If there was ever a poster child for rookie of the year, it would be Alvarez, who raked at a .313 clip with 27 long balls, 78 RBI, an OPS+ of 173 and a bWAR of 3.8 in 87 games.
Which Astros have the best odds for the 2022 American League Rookie of the Year?
The current odds at WynnBet have Bobby Witt Jr. of the Kansas City Royals listed as the favorite to win the AL Rookie of the Year at +500 or 16.7%. Further down the list is Jeremy Peña at +1300 (7.1%).
There’s some weird symmetry happening as Peña is the presumed replacement if Correa opts for a team other than the Astros in free agency, though a recent signing has perhaps added a question mark to that calculation.
Still, it appears if Correa moves on, Peña will have a fair opportunity to be the everyday shortstop in Houston for a team favored to win the American League West and perhaps return to the World Series. To me, this makes Peña, while still a long shot, a value at these numbers.
It also says something about the Astros developmental system that Pena, with limited professional experience, less pedigree and not even being assured of a roster spot, this high on the list.
The other Astros rookie listed is center fielder Jose Siri at +5000 (2%), whose 46 major-league at-bats last season resulted in a .304 average and four home runs. Siri flashed last season, but given his place in the Astros outfield pecking order, I’m hard pressed to find a reason for him to be included as one of the thirty-six to be given odds.
Worlds would have to collide for Siri to take this award home, as he’s third in-line for the center field job in Houston once Jake Meyers’ rehab is complete.