How The Top AL MVP Finishers Were Acquired

None of the top ten finishers in this year’s AL MVP balloting joined their teams via the free agent market. Five were obtained in trades, four others were drafted and one was signed as an international free agent. Here's a look at how teams around the American League originally acquired the top ten finishers in the 2011 AL MVP voting (some have since signed extensions):

  • Justin Verlander – Draft – The Tigers selected Verlander with the second overall pick in 2004 and signed him to a five-year extension before the 2010 season.
  • Jacoby Ellsbury – Draft – The Red Sox selected Ellsbury with the 23rd overall pick in the 2005 draft and held onto him after a lost 2010 season despite trade interest from other clubs.
  • Jose Bautista – Trade -The Blue Jays acquired Bautista from the Pirates for Robinzon Diaz in 2008. Before the Blue Jays acquired him, Bautista suited up for the Pirates, Royals, Devil Rays and Orioles.
  • Curtis Granderson – Trade – The Yankees acquired Granderson from the Tigers in the three-team trade that sent Ian Kennedy to Arizona and Austin Jackson and Max Scherzer to Detroit. The Tigers originally selected Granderson in the third round of the 2002 draft.
  • Miguel Cabrera – Trade - The Tigers acquired Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis from the Marlins for a group of players led by Andrew Miller and Cameron Maybin.
  • Robinson Cano – International Signing - The Yankees signed Cano out of the Dominican Republic as an amateur free agent in 2001. 
  • Adrian Gonzalez – Trade – The Red Sox surrendered a trio of top prospects to obtain Gonzalez from the Padres a year ago.
  • Michael Young – Trade – The Rangers, then under GM Doug Melvin, acquired Young from the Blue Jays for Esteban Loaiza in the summer of 2000.
  • Dustin Pedroia – Draft – The Red Sox selected Pedroia, the 2008 MVP, in the second round of the 2004 draft.
  • Evan Longoria – Draft - Tampa Bay selected Longoria with the third overall pick of the 2006 draft and he's been playing at an elite level since his 2008 rookie season.

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