- MVP: Ryan Zimmerman (Runner Up: Josh Willingham)
My choice of Willingham might surprise some. Morgan has been getting mentioned as a team MVP, but I just can't give that to a guy who got here, immediately had the hottest hot streak of his career, and then get hurt. Dunn gets bonus points for moving around the diamond without complaint (wonder if Guzman noticed), but Willingham noses him out. Hammer slumped at the end, but for a couple months he was one of the best hitters in the National League, bar none. Also, he's become a below-average but not terrible fielder and handled right field as well as left. He and Dunn are close, but I'll give it to Willingham.
- Silver Slugger: Adam Dunn (Runner up: Ryan Zimmerman)
Compared to the rest of the league's best, Dunn's still a notch below the true elites. He ranked 20th in wOBA in MLB. He's great if he's your second-best hitter, but he's not good enough to carry a contender.
Say what you want about Dunn's glove and the fact that he belongs in the AL (I sure do), but that doesn't change the fact that he was hands down the Nationals' best hitter in 2009.
- Cy Young: John Lannan (Runner Up: Jordan Zimmermann)
Zimmermann on the other hand was no less than the best pitcher to take the mound for Washington this year. His 23% strikeout rate and 7.4% walk rate are All-Star-worthy. He had some bad luck on balls in play (.339), strand rate (67.5%), and home run per flyball rate (12.2%) which made his ERA (4.63) look worse than his skill level. His injury could be devastating to the franchise, and could be nearly as consequential long-term as the Zimmerman and Strasburg signings.
- Fireman of the Year: Tyler Clippard (Runner Up: Mike MacDougal)
MacDougal was basically terrible with 38 unintentional walks against 34 strikeouts. But, in the great tradition of Rocky Biddle, MacDougal reminds us that from time to time awful pitchers can rack up saves. He closed out 20 of 21, and lucky or not, we took it. I know it's the awards post, but still.
Jason Bergmann and Sean Burnett both deserve honorable mention for ranking #1 and #2 in all of baseball in percentage of inherited runners stranded, among pitchers that inherited at least 50 runners.
- Most Improved Player: Ross Detwiler (Runner Up: Ian Desmond)
Overall, Detwiler didn't miss nearly enough bats, striking out just 12.6% of batters faced. And his 42.7% groundball rate is just ok. He still has a ways to go to be a solid big league starter, much less justify his draft spot. But a year ago at this time he was looking like a potential total bust, and barring injury that now seems very unlikely.
Desmond is a similar story. Formerly a highly touted prospect, his stock fell as he failed to advance as expected and showed little ability to command the strike zone. This year, he finally took the next step. His OBP jumped from .318 in AA in 2008 to .401 across AA and AAA his year. And when he got the call in September, he blew everyone away with a .561 slugging percentage. Still, during his September call-up, his 5.7% walk rate was the more important metric, and his inability to avoid bad errors in the field raises flags. Like Detwiler, Desmond hasn't yet shown he can be a Major League contributor, but he's no longer a candidate to wash out completely.
- Gold Glove: Ryan Zimmerman (Runner Up: Nyjer Morgan)
Morgan provided outstanding range and excellent instincts in his first chance to play every day in center. He could very well deserve his own gold glove next year.
- Rookie of the Year: Jordan Zimmermann (Runner Up: Craig Stammen)
Stammen was hard to pass over for most improved. His 47.1% groundball rate and 2.02 walks per 9 should make him a solid back-end starter for a long time to come, if he can stay healthy.