Cleveland Guardians star Jose Ramirez has been a major leaguer since 2013.
However, he reached stardom in 2017 with a 56-double, 29-homer, 17-steal, .318-average season.
Ever since that year, the diminutive infielder has been an MVP candidate more often than not.
In fact, he finished in the top-three in the AL MVP race in 2017, 2018, and 2020.
You can make a very strong case that he deserved to win the award in 2020 over slugger Jose Abreu, but that’s now water under the bridge.
Still, with his sustained success and current performance level (he had a 24-homer, 28-steal season last year with an .831 OPS), the league keeps omitting his name in predictions and preview lists.
MLB posted their favorites for the AL and NL MVP awards in 2024, plus some dark-horse candidates.
J-Ram’s name is absent from all lists.
https://t.co/Z3s2EpgF39's favorites for AL & NL MVP in 2024.
Do you agree with their picks? pic.twitter.com/nhzpUsEXxx
— MLB (@MLB) February 9, 2024
One can understand that he is not in the top-five favorites in the AL, although there is a case to be made he is more of a favorite than Adley Rutschman and other names there.
But to leave him off the dark-horse candidate list is an unequivocal sign of disrespect.
Riley Greene is an extremely promising outfielder for the Detroit Tigers, but even in a best-case scenario, it’s hard to see him being more productive in 2024 than Ramirez.
Still, J-Ram enjoys the low-profile: it doesn’t matter who respects him or who considers him a potential MVP, he will always perform to the best of his abilities.
He remains a star in his prime, even if the league fails to recognize that more often than not.