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In Major League Baseball, the Rookie of the Year Award is given to the best first-year players in the American and National Leagues.

From 1940-46, the Chicago chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) selected a rookie of the year. In 1947, they invited all members of the BBWAA to vote. Coincidentally, 1947 was the year in which Jackie Robinson became the first African American player in modern major league history and he won the first one. Originally the award was known as the J. Louis Comiskey Memorial Award, after the Chicago White Sox owner of the 1930s. In 1987, in honor of the 40th year since Jackie Robinson broke the color line, it became known as the Jackie Robinson Award.

Only two players, both in the American League, have been named Rookie of the Year and MVP in the same year, Fred Lynn in 1975 and Ichiro Suzuki in 2001. The only Rookie of the Year to win the Cy Young Award in the same year was Fernando Valenzuela in 1981.

What qualifies as a rookie?[]

In order to qualify for the award a player must have accumulated less than both of the following, prior to the season under consideration:

  • 130 at bats or 50 innings pitched in the major leagues
  • 45 days on the active rosters of major league clubs (excluding time on the disabled list or any time after rosters are expanded on September 1)

International experience[]

The award has come under scrutiny in recent years, as several Japanese players (namely Hideo Nomo in 1995, Kazuhiro Sasaki in 2000, and Ichiro Suzuki in 2001) with prior experience in Japan have won the award during their first year playing in the United States. While rookies to Major League Baseball, these players were already tested professionals before coming to the United States, leading some baseball writers to question whether they should be considered true rookies. However, the policy remains in place that experience outside the U.S. major leagues does not affect one's status as a rookie. The issue was raised again in 2003, as Hideki Matsui narrowly lost the balloting to Angel Berroa. It should be noted, however, that the first award winner and whom the award is named after is Jackie Robinson who was 27 years old at the time and had spent several years playing in the Negro Leagues.

List of Rookie of the Year winners[]

Major Leagues combined (1947-48)[]

Year Player, Team, Position
1947 Jackie Robinson, Brooklyn Dodgers, 2B
1948 Alvin Dark, Boston Braves, SS

National and American League winners (1949-present)[]

Year National League American League
1949 Don Newcombe, Brooklyn Dodgers, P Roy Sievers, St. Louis Browns, OF
1950 Sam Jethroe, Boston Braves, OF Walt Dropo, Boston Red Sox, 1B
1951 Willie Mays, New York Giants, OF Gil McDougald, New York Yankees, 3B
1952 Joe Black, Brooklyn Dodgers, P Harry Byrd, Philadelphia Athletics, P
1953 Jim Gilliam, Brooklyn Dodgers, 2B Harvey Kuenn, Detroit Tigers, SS
1954 Wally Moon, St. Louis Cardinals, OF Bob Grim, New York Yankees, P
1955 Bill Virdon, St. Louis Cardinals, OF Herb Score, Cleveland Indians, P
1956 Frank Robinson, Cincinnati Reds, OF Luis Aparicio, Chicago White Sox, SS
1957 Jack Sanford, Philadelphia Phillies, P Tony Kubek, New York Yankees, SS
1958 Orlando Cepeda, San Francisco Giants, 1B Albie Pearson, Washington Senators, OF
1959 Willie McCovey, San Francisco Giants, 1B Bob Allison, Washington Senators, OF
1960 Frank Howard, Los Angeles Dodgers, OF Ron Hansen, Baltimore Orioles, SS
1961 Billy Williams, Chicago Cubs, OF Don Schwall, Boston Red Sox, P
1962 Ken Hubbs, Chicago Cubs, 2B Tom Tresh, New York Yankees, SS
1963 Pete Rose, Cincinnati Reds Gary Peters, Chicago White Sox, P
1964 Dick Allen, Philadelphia Phillies Tony Oliva, Minnesota Twins, OF
1965 Jim Lefebvre, Los Angeles Dodgers, 2B Curt Blefary, Baltimore Orioles, OF
1966 Tommy Helms, Cincinnati Reds, 2B Tommie Agee, Chicago White Sox, OF
1967 Tom Seaver, New York Mets, P Rod Carew, Minnesota Twins, 2B
1968 Johnny Bench, Cincinnati Reds, C Stan Bahnsen, New York Yankees, P
1969 Ted Sizemore, Los Angeles Dodgers, 2B Lou Piniella, Kansas City Royals, OF
1970 Carl Morton, Montreal Expos, P Thurman Munson, New York Yankees, C
1971 Earl Williams, Atlanta Braves, C Chris Chambliss, Cleveland Indians, 1B
1972 Jon Matlack, New York Mets, P Carlton Fisk, Boston Red Sox, C
1973 Gary Matthews, San Francisco Giants, OF Al Bumbry, Baltimore Orioles, OF
1974 Bake McBride, St. Louis Cardinals, OF Mike Hargrove, Texas Rangers, 1B
1975 John Montefusco, San Francisco Giants, P Fred Lynn, Boston Red Sox, OF
1976 Butch Metzger, San Diego Padres, P
Pat Zachry, Cincinnati Reds, P
Mark Fidrych, Detroit Tigers, P
1977 Andre Dawson, Montreal Expos, OF Eddie Murray, Baltimore Orioles, DH
1978 Bob Horner, Atlanta Braves, 3B Lou Whitaker, Detroit Tigers, 2B
1979 Rick Sutcliffe, Los Angeles Dodgers, P John Castino, Minnesota Twins, 3B
Alfredo Griffin, Toronto Blue Jays, SS
1980 Steve Howe, Los Angeles Dodgers, P Joe Charboneau, Cleveland Indians, OF
1981 Fernando Valenzuela, Los Angeles Dodgers, P Dave Righetti, New York Yankees, P
1982 Steve Sax, Los Angeles Dodgers, 2B Cal Ripken, Jr., Baltimore Orioles, SS
1983 Darryl Strawberry, New York Mets, OF Ron Kittle, Chicago White Sox, OF
1984 Dwight Gooden, New York Mets, P Alvin Davis, Seattle Mariners, 1B
1985 Vince Coleman, St. Louis Cardinals, OF Ozzie Guillen, Chicago White Sox, SS
1986 Todd Worrell, St. Louis Cardinals, P José Canseco, Oakland Athletics, OF
1987 Benito Santiago, San Diego Padres, C Mark McGwire, Oakland Athletics, 1B
1988 Chris Sabo, Cincinnati Reds, 3B Walt Weiss, Oakland Athletics, SS
1989 Jerome Walton, Chicago Cubs, OF Gregg Olson, Baltimore Orioles, P
1990 David Justice, Atlanta Braves, OF Sandy Alomar, Jr., Cleveland Indians, C
1991 Jeff Bagwell, Houston Astros, 1B Chuck Knoblauch, Minnesota Twins, 2B
1992 Eric Karros, Los Angeles Dodgers, 1B Pat Listach, Milwaukee Brewers, SS
1993 Mike Piazza, Los Angeles Dodgers, C Tim Salmon, California Angels, OF
1994 Raul Mondesi, Los Angeles Dodgers, OF Bob Hamelin, Kansas City Royals, DH
1995 Hideo Nomo, Los Angeles Dodgers, P Marty Cordova, Minnesota Twins, OF
1996 Todd Hollandsworth, Los Angeles Dodgers, OF Derek Jeter, New York Yankees, SS
1997 Scott Rolen, Philadelphia Phillies, 3B Nomar Garciaparra, Boston Red Sox, SS
1998 Kerry Wood, Chicago Cubs, P Ben Grieve, Oakland Athletics, OF
1999 Scott Williamson, Cincinnati Reds, P Carlos Beltrán, Kansas City Royals, OF
2000 Rafael Furcal, Atlanta Braves, SS Kazuhiro Sasaki, Seattle Mariners, P
2001 Albert Pujols, St. Louis Cardinals, 3B-OF Ichiro Suzuki, Seattle Mariners, OF
2002 Jason Jennings, Colorado Rockies, P Eric Hinske, Toronto Blue Jays, 3B
2003 Dontrelle Willis, Florida Marlins, P Angel Berroa, Kansas City Royals, SS
2004 Jason Bay, Pittsburgh Pirates, OF Bobby Crosby, Oakland Athletics, SS
2005 Ryan Howard, Philadelphia Phillies, 1B Huston Street, Oakland Athletics, P
2006 Hanley Ramirez, Florida Marlins, SS Justin Verlander, Detroit Tigers, P
2007 Ryan Braun, Milwaukee Brewers, 3B Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox, 2B
2008 Geovanny Soto, Chicago Cubs, C Evan Longoria, Tampa Bay Rays, 3B
2009 Chris Coghlan, Florida Marlins, OF Andrew Bailey, Oakland Athletics, P
2010 Buster Posey, San Francisco Giants, C Neftalí Feliz, Texas Rangers, P
2011 Craig Kimbrel, Atlanta Braves, P Jeremy Hellickson, Tampa Bay Rays, P
2012 Bryce Harper, Washington Nationals, OF Mike Trout, Los Angeles Dodgers, OF
2013 José Fernández, Miami Marlins, P Will Myers, Tampa Bay Rays, OF
2014 Jacob deGrom, New York Mets, P José Abreu, Chicago White Sox, 1B
2015 Kris Bryant, Chicago Cubs, 3B Carlos Correa, Houston Astros, SS
2016 Corey Seager, Los Angeles Dodgers, SS Michael Fulmer, Detroit Tigers, P
2017 Cody Bellinger, Los Angeles Dodgers, 1B Aaron Judge, New York Yankees, OF
2018 Ronald Acuña Jr., Atlanta Braves, OF Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels, P/DH
2019 Pete Alonso, New York Mets, 1B Yordan Alvarez, Houston Astros, DH/OF
2020 Devin Williams, Milwaukee Brewers, P Kyle Lewis, Seattle Mariners, OF
2021 Jonathan India, Cincinnati Reds, 2B Randy Arozarena, Tampa Bay Rays, OF

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