molitorSporting News doesn’t have the “official” vote for American League Manager of the Year, but the methodology and results from their vote, which came out today, is interesting nonetheless.

The award is given out by a panel of 27 MLB managers, which is almost a complete sampling and reflects, of course, a “jury of your peers” type of approach as opposed to the official award which is given out by baseball writers. And the winner of the Sporting News award was Twins rookie manager Paul Molitor.

A.J. Hinch, who took the Astros from woeful to the playoffs, came in second in the AL — interestingly taking a back seat to Molitor, who helped the Twins improve 13 games this season over last but couldn’t quite get them into the playoffs.

It should be noted, too, that the man Molitor replaced as Twins manager, Ron Gardenhire, won the Sporting News award twice — once in 2004 and again in 2010.

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