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Diamondbacks Gameday Thread, #64: 6/10 @ Tigers

Corbin Carroll for MVP

Arizona Diamondbacks v Detroit Tigers Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Ketel Marte - 2B Zach McKinstry - RF
Corbin Carroll - LF Javier Baez - SS
Lourdes Gurriel - DH Kerry Carpenter - LF
Christian Walker - 1B Spencer Torkelson - 1B
Emmanuel Rivera - 3B Nick Maton - 3B
Pavin Smith - RF Zack Short - 2B
Nick Ahmed - SS Miguel Cabrera - DH
Gabriel Moreno - C Jake Rogers - C
Jake McCarthy - CF Jake Marisnick - CF
Ryne Nelson - RHP Matthew Boyd - LHP

An early start to today's game in Detroit (though if you think this is bad, you'll be in for a VERY nasty shock tomorrow. Do not expect much GDT content). But after yesterday, there's really only one possible topic. Corbin Carroll, who is now on pace for 33 HR, 46 SB, a .966 OPS and a 7.7 bWAR season. Despite claims that Francisco Alvarez or, even more ridiculously, Elly de la Cruz are in contention, the award is completely Corbin's to lose. Right now, his 3.0 bWAR is more than twice as much as any other rookie in the league. Spencer Steer is next, all the way back on 1.3 bWAR. For context, the all-time leader for rookie bWAR in a season by a D-backs position player is Ender Inciarte's 3.3 in 2014. Carroll should catch him next week.

If Corbin can maintain this pace - and after 63 games, it's getting hard to argue we're in small sample size - he's going to be in super-elite territory. In the entire history of the award only one NL rookie has passed even 7 bWAR: Dick Allen, back in 1964. Carroll's .966 OPS is currently three points BETTER than Mike Trout's rookie campaign. The only qualified rookie with a better OPS in the integrated era is Albert Pujols, and even that 1.013 number in 2001 is within sight. Carroll is currently 55 points above, for example, Todd Helton. Who was a first baseman, two years older and played in Coors Field. It's 25 points better than Pete Alonso, who hit 53 home-runs for the Mets in 2019.

Never mind RotY, the question is now increasingly to what extent Carroll needs to be in the Most Valuable Player conversation. For his 163 OPS+ now leads all qualifying hitters in the National League, ahead of the presumed front runners, Ronald Acuña Jr. of the Braves (152), Miami's Luis Arraez (159), and the Dodgers' Freddie Freeman (161). If you look at bWAR, Acuña is just on top at 3.2, compared to 3.0 for Carroll and Arraez. But over on, Corbin's 3.1 leads the pack, narrowly ahead of Freeman and Atlanta's Sean Murphy. His projected bWAR of 7.7 would also be third-best in franchise history, behind Goldy's 8.3 in 2015 and Gonzo's 7.9 in 2001. They were aged 27 and 33 respectively.

Of course, anything can happen going forward. We will continue to hold our breath any time Carroll gets hit by a pitch (he's tied for the team lead there). But right now, the Corbin contract extension looks like perhaps the greatest deal in the history of the Diamondbacks.