Hamilton or Cabrera for MVP?

Inspired by an ongoing debates in the comments section over at THT Live, I propose to you the following considerations:
  1. Josh Hamilton’s AVG/SLG stats (.359/.411/.633) are slightly better than Miguel Cabrera’s (.328/.420/.622), but Miggy has a slight edge in OBP (which is more valuable than slugging).
  2. Even with park factors considered, Miguel Cabrera’s wOBA is .427. Hamilton’s is .447
  3. In terms of total batting production, Hamilton’s BRAR is +55.5, having missed almost a month of play. Cabrera’s is +55.3 with an additional 17 games played.
  4. Miguel Cabrera’s 1B fielding is was indexed at -6.1 UZR/150 (take 1 year UZR with a serious grain of salt), while Hamilton’s OF fielding per 150 was +10.8. Hamilton plays the relatively more premium fielding position.
  5. Hamilton’s cumulative WPA on the season was +6.25, whereas Cabrera’s was a higher +7.42. If we keep everything constant and pro-rate Hamilton’s playing time to match Cabrera’s, Hamilton’s extrapolated WPA becomes 7.09. Thus, it’s closer than it seems, but Miggy does out-edge Hamilton here.
  6. In terms of pure raw peripherals, Miggy edges Hamilton in ISO (.294 vs .274) and owns him in BB% (13.7% vs 7.5%).
  7. Hamilton was the more prodigious clipper (22.0% LD% vs 18.9% LD%) and Hamilton grounded into less double plays per AB (2.1%) than Miggy (3.1%)

So yes, the overall end of season numbers are pretty darn close, but when you consider that Hamilton’s team made it to the playoffs (a major factor in G/9 analysis) and that Hamilton was just as valuable over 17 less games, you honestly have to give the edge to Hamilton. Plus Hamilton didn’t get to drink any champagne (though he did never dress up in the raincoat with duck tape over his mouth as he promised the media...). Accordingly, this is why I feel that he most deserves the award.