We’re starting a new tradition here at IPL or, more accurately, reviving an old one.
The idea to create this award started a few weeks ago when I noticed a tweet by Chris Creamer of SportsLogos.net. Creamer had stumbled across an old picture of Joe Charboneau from his rookie year with a mysterious patch on his right sleeve.
Apparently the Cleveland Press used to vote on a weekly Press Star of the Week award with the winner receiving a patch for his arm. If you look closely at the image, you can see a second patch on Charboneau’s arm, which presumably is the same one (he won five in 1980).
I don’t know how long this award lasted. I can’t find any images of the patch from 1979 or 1981 but with so few images available from that time it doesn’t mean the award didn’t exist. If it did continue beyond 1980, it certainly didn’t last long. The Cleveland Press—the most circulated local newspaper until the late 1960s—ceased publication in June, 1982.
So after doing this research I though it would be fun to restart this tradition, and thus, we created the Lajoie Award.
IPL writers will vote on the award based on the previous week’s performances (Monday through Sunday) and we’ll publish the results. At the end of the season, we’ll then have a season-long winner based on the weekly tally.
Voters will rank their top three candidates, with points being awarded on a 3-2-1 basis.
Voting for the inagural Lajoie Award played out like this:
Jose Ramirez, 13 pts
Mike Napoli, 7 pts
Josh Tomlin, 5 pts
Corey Kluber, 3 pts
Rajai Davis, 3 pts
Dan Otero, 2 pts
Cody Anderson, 2 pts
Francisco Lindor, 1 pt
Ramirez started all seven games for the Tribe this week, posting a .348 average, 500 OBP and two home runs—easily the best week of his career.