Bottom 7: Youkilis - steady as she goes

September 23, 2008 - 2:27 pm

The Dustin Pedroia-for-MVP campaign may have taken on so much momentum--at least locally--that it cannot be halted. But it remains difficult to argue that he has been more valuable than one of his teammates.  Pedroia, of course, has enjoyed a spectacular season. He entered tonight hitting .323/.374/.491/.865. Yet his numbers reflect primarily an incredible hot streak that ran from June through August. Pedroia's lines in April (.303/.346/.420/.766) and May (.260/.295/.374/.669) were relatively pedestrian.    The more consistent player has been Kevin Youkilis. Tonight, Youkilis has reached base in all four of his plate appearances, hammering a two-run homer and accepting three walks against Indians starter Cliff Lee. Youkilis is now hitting .281 with a .967 OPS this month. The average represents a season low for a single turn of the calendar, while the OPS is his second lowest, ahead of a still-solid .857 mark in April. His OPS has been more than 30 percent better than league average in every month of the season.  In short, since the curtain lifted on 2008, Youkilis has performed without fail at an All-Star level. That does not necessarily make him more valuable than Pedroia. Then again, maybe it does...