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Central Division

East Division

Series Wrapup

Story

The National League featured repeat-winners in the Eastern and Western Divisions in 2009, and a St. Louis Cardinals team that returned to the postseason after a two-year absence.

The Cardinals overcame injuries to several key players to claim their first division title since 2006, compiling a regular-season record of 91-71 that left them 7 ½ games ahead of the second-place Chicago Cubs, who they replaced at the top of the division standings.  St. Louis lost starting third baseman Troy Glaus for all but 14 games, southpaw hurler Mark Mulder for the entire year, and staff ace Chris Carpenter for the season’s first month.  Fortunately, Carpenter returned in time to team up with Adam Wainwright, to give the Cardinals the most formidable pitching duo in the senior circuit.  Carpenter finished 17-4 with a league-leading 2.24 ERA.  Wainwright compiled a record of 19-8, to lead all N.L. hurlers in victories.  He also topped the circuit with 233 innings pitched, compiled an outstanding 2.63 ERA, and struck out 212 batters.  Joel Pineiro contributed another 15 wins, and closer Ryan Franklin compiled a 1.92 ERA and converted 38 of his 43 save opportunities. 

Although the Cardinals finished near the middle of the league rankings in most offensive statistical categories, they featured the senior circuit’s best player in Albert Pujols.  The slugging first baseman earned his second straight MVP trophy, and the third of his career, by batting .327, driving in 135 runs, and leading the league with 47 home runs, 124 runs scored, 374 total bases, a .443 on-base percentage, and a .658 slugging average.  Matt Holliday also gave the team a huge lift after coming over from Oakland during the season’s second half, batting .353, hitting 13 homers, and driving in 55 runs in his 63 games with the club.

Despite finishing third in the division, 11 games behind the first-place Cardinals, the Milwaukee Brewers featured two of the league’s top performers.  Prince Fielder batted .299, scored 103 runs, tied for the league lead with 141 runs batted in, and placed second in the circuit to Pujols with 46 home runs, 356 total bases, and a .602 slugging average.  Ryan Braun also had an exceptional year for the Brewers, hitting 32 home runs and finishing among the league leaders with 114 runs batted in, 113 runs scored, and a .320 batting average. 

While the Cardinals returned to the top of the N.L. Central after a two-year hiatus, the Los Angeles Dodgers captured their second straight Western Division title, edging out the runner-up Colorado Rockies by a slim three-game margin with a league-best record of 95-67.  The Rockies, though, advanced to the postseason as the senior circuit’s wild-card entry.

The Rockies’ powerful offense enabled them to make the playoffs for just the third time in their 17-year history.  Colorado finished second in the league with 804 runs scored and 190 home runs.  Outfielder Brad Hawpe batted .285, hit 23 homers, knocked in 86 runs, and scored 82 others.  First baseman Todd Helton drove in 86 runs and placed among the league leaders with a .325 batting average.  Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki earned a top-five finish in the N.L. MVP balloting by batting .297, hitting 32 homers, driving in 92 runs, and scoring 101 others.

Los Angeles remained the division's most well-balanced team, compiling a league-high .270 team batting average, placing fourth in the circuit with 780 runs scored, and leading the league with a 3.41 team ERA.  Although no Dodger hurler won more than 12 games, the team received solid performances from three young pitchers who showed a great deal of promise.  Chad Billingsley led the staff with 12 victories and struck out 179 batters in 196 innings of work.  Hard-throwing 21-year-old left-hander Clayton Kershaw finished the year just 8-8, but he led the team with a 2.79 ERA and 185 strikeouts.  Closer Jonathan Broxton won seven games and converted 36 of his 42 save opportunities. 

The trio of James Loney, Matt Kemp, and Andre Ethier paced the Dodgers on offense.  First baseman Loney batted .281 and knocked in 90 runs.  Centerfielder Kemp hit 26 homers, knocked in 101 runs, scored 97 others, and batted .297.  Right-fielder Ethier batted .272, scored 92 runs, and led the team with 31 home runs and 106 runs batted in. 

The Philadelphia Phillies also repeated as division champions in the East, claiming their third straight division title by finishing the season with a record of 93-69, six games ahead of the runner-up Florida Marlins, and seven games in front of the third-place Atlanta Braves.  The young Marlins featured the division’s finest all-around player in shortstop Hanley Ramirez, who hit 24 home runs, knocked in 106 runs, scored 101 others, stole 27 bases, and led the league with a .342 batting average.  His exceptional play earned him a second-place finish in the N.L. MVP voting.

In spite of the efforts of Ramirez, the Phillies remained the class of the division.  Philadelphia possessed only mediocre pitching, ranking sixth in the league with a 4.16 team ERA and lacking a true staff ace for much of the season.  However, the Phillies acquired Cliff Lee from the Cleveland Indians just prior to the trading deadline, giving them the quality starter they so desperately needed at the top of their rotation.  Lee compiled a record of 7-4 and an ERA of 3.39 for Philadelphia over the season’s final two months.

The Phillies’ greatest strength remained their potent offense, which topped the senior circuit with 820 runs scored and 224 home runs.  Left-fielder Raul Ibanez hit 34 home runs, knocked in 93 runs, and scored 93 others.  Right-fielder Jayson Werth blossomed into a star, hitting 36 homers, driving in 99 runs, and scoring 98 times.  Centerfielder Shane Victorino batted .292, scored 102 runs, and stole 25 bases.  Shortstop Jimmy Rollins had something of an off year, batting only .250 and compiling just a .296 on-base percentage.  But he still managed to hit 21 homers, drive in 77 runs, steal 31 bases, and score 100 runs.  Second baseman Chase Utley had another outstanding year, batting .282, compiling a .397 on-base percentage, homering 31 times, knocking in 93 runs, and scoring 112 times.  Slugging first baseman Ryan Howard earned a third-place finish in the N.L. MVP voting by batting .279, scoring 105 runs, tying for the league lead with 141 runs batted in, and finishing among the leaders with 45 home runs and a .571 slugging percentage.

The Phillies experienced few problems in earning a return-trip to the World Series.  They first defeated the Colorado Rockies in four games in the first round of the postseason tournament.  They then needed only five games to dispose of a Dodger team that earlier swept the Cardinals in three straight games in the other Division Series. 

However, the Phillies met their match when they faced the New York Yankees in the World Series.  Led by the powerful hitting of Hideki Matsui, the Yankees defeated their National League counterparts in six games.  Cliff Lee and Chase Utley starred in defeat for the Phillies.  Lee posted Philadelphia’s only two victories, handcuffing New York’s lineup in Games One and Five.  Meanwhile, Utley hammered Yankee pitching for five home runs and eight runs batted in.

Other outstanding performers, notable events, and points of interest from around the league follow:

• January 22 -Jeff Kent announced his retirement after 17 seasons.  He hit more home runs than any other second baseman in major league history.

• April 13 - Harry Kalas, play-by-play announcer for the Philadelphia Phillies, died of a heart attack after collapsing in the broadcast booth at Nationals Park before the game with the Washington Nationals.

• April 17 - Gary Sheffield of the New York Mets hit his 500th career home run while pinch-hitting against the Milwaukee Brewers.

• June 4 – San Francisco’s Randy Johnson became the 24th pitcher in major league history to win 300 games.

• June 9 – The Washington Nationals selected San Diego State right-handed pitcher Stephen Strasburg with the first overall pick in the 2009 Major League Baseball Draft.

• June 21 – The St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Kansas City Royals 12-5 at Kauffman Stadium, giving Tony La Russa his 2,500th victory as a manager.  La Russa became just the third manager in major league history to reach the 2,500-win plateau, joining Connie Mack (3,831) and John McGraw (2,763).

• July 10 – At AT&T Park, San Francisco’s Jonathan Sanchez pitched a no-hitter against the San Diego Padres, shutting them out 8-0.
 
• September 23 – The Atlanta Braves announced that Bobby Cox intended to retire from his managerial position at the conclusion of the 2010 campaign and immediately thereafter enter into a five-year contract with the club that would enable him to continue serving as a consultant within the organization.

• Chicago’s Derrek Lee hit 35 home runs, knocked in 111 runs, and batted .306.

• San Diego first baseman Adrian Gonzalez hit 40 homers, drove in 99 runs, scored 90 others, and batted .277.

• San Francisco’s Tim Lincecum earned his second consecutive Cy Young Award by going 15-7, with a 2.48 ERA and a league-leading 261 strikeouts.

• Giants teammate Pablo Sandoval hit 25 home runs, knocked in 90 runs, and placed second in the league with a .330 batting average.

Seasons of the National League

1876 · 1877 · 1878 · 1879 · 1880 · 1881 · 1882 · 1883 · 1884 · 1885 · 1886 · 1887 · 1888 · 1889 · 1890 · 1891 · 1892 · 1893 · 1894 · 1895 · 1896 · 1897 · 1898 · 1899 · 1900 · 1901 · 1902 · 1903 · 1904 · 1905 · 1906 · 1907 · 1908 · 1909 · 1910 · 1911 · 1912 · 1913 · 1914 · 1915 · 1916 · 1917 · 1918 · 1919 · 1920 · 1921 · 1922 · 1923 · 1924 · 1925 · 1926 · 1927 · 1928 · 1929 · 1930 · 1931 · 1932 · 1933 · 1934 · 1935 · 1936 · 1937 · 1938 · 1939 · 1940 · 1941 · 1942 · 1943 · 1944 · 1945 · 1946 · 1947 · 1948 · 1949 · 1950 · 1951 · 1952 · 1953 · 1954 · 1955 · 1956 · 1957 · 1958 · 1959 · 1960 · 1961 · 1962 · 1963 · 1964 · 1965 · 1966 · 1967 · 1968 · 1969 · 1970 · 1971 · 1972 · 1973 · 1974 · 1975 · 1976 · 1977 · 1978 · 1979 · 1980 · 1981 · 1982 · 1983 · 1984 · 1985 · 1986 · 1987 · 1988 · 1989 · 1990 · 1991 · 1992 · 1993 · 1994 · 1995 · 1996 · 1997 · 1998 · 1999 · 2000 · 2001 · 2002 · 2003 · 2004 · 2005 · 2006 · 2007 · 2008 · 2009 · 2010  

Batting

TM G AB R H RBI AVG 2B 3B HR SB CS TB OBP SLG OPSLG GIDP SF SH
ARI 2307 5572 720 1409 686 .177 307 45 173 102 41 2325 .313 .277 .644 93 41 54
ATL 2336 5539 735 1459 700 .183 300 20 149 58 26 2246 .365 .265 .681 142 47 95
CHN 2343 5486 707 1398 678 .200 293 29 161 56 34 2232 .318 .308 .667 134 42 65
CIN 2314 5462 673 1349 637 .198 280 25 158 96 40 2153 .330 .290 .662 103 41 100
COL 2382 5399 805 1408 761 .189 300 50 190 106 55 2378 .349 .286 .710 111 60 76
FLO 2394 5572 772 1493 727 .199 296 25 159 75 35 2316 .355 .290 .732 110 39 70
HOU 2340 5436 643 1415 616 .163 270 32 142 113 44 2175 .323 .238 .610 153 45 66
LAN 2352 5592 780 1511 739 .195 278 39 145 116 48 2302 .317 .273 .637 141 44 78
MIL 2321 5510 785 1447 757 .192 281 37 182 68 37 2348 .332 .275 .653 128 47 58
NYN 2377 5453 671 1472 631 .200 295 49 95 122 44 2150 .310 .274 .614 144 55 88
PHI 2285 5578 820 1439 788 .210 312 35 224 119 28 2493 .330 .318 .692 90 45 55
PIT 2195 5417 636 1364 612 .166 289 34 125 90 32 2096 .304 .241 .608 124 36 60
SDN 2349 5425 638 1315 605 .166 265 31 141 82 29 2065 .304 .233 .591 131 36 74
SFN 2304 5493 657 1411 612 .206 275 43 122 78 28 2138 .312 .274 .636 115 55 67
SLN 2358 5465 730 1436 694 .179 294 29 160 75 31 2268 .310 .271 .636 127 43 68
WAS 2401 5493 710 1416 685 .178 271 38 156 73 40 2231 .313 .258 .613 133 42 64

Pitching

Team G W L IP SO BB BF H HR ERA ER R GC SH SV WP BK
ARI 645 70 92 1446 1158 525 6267 1470 168 149.430 714 782 4 1 36 79 2
ATL 650 86 76 1461 1232 530 6208 1399 119 154.420 581 641 3 0 38 40 6
CHN 641 83 78 1445 1272 586 6177 1329 160 223.540 617 672 3 2 40 60 6
CIN 640 78 84 1456 1069 577 6253 1420 188 133.100 677 723 6 4 41 45 1
COL 646 92 70 1440 1154 528 6171 1427 141 115.010 677 715 5 2 45 48 5
FLO 692 87 75 1444 1248 601 6299 1425 160 173.780 694 766 5 1 45 59 5
HOU 659 74 88 1431 1144 546 6237 1521 176 126.310 722 770 5 1 39 43 4
LAN 688 95 67 1473 1272 584 6182 1265 127 86.590 559 611 1 1 44 76 2
MIL 674 80 82 1436 1104 607 6352 1498 207 142.250 772 818 1 0 44 61 1
NYN 673 70 92 1425 1031 616 6284 1452 158 98.470 707 757 3 2 39 41 10
PHI 621 93 69 1457 1153 489 6263 1479 189 98.370 673 709 8 5 44 28 2
PIT 617 62 99 1418 919 563 6144 1491 152 139.840 724 768 5 2 28 52 3
SDN 689 75 87 1451 1187 603 6273 1422 167 187.250 705 769 2 1 45 52 8
SFN 619 88 74 1446 1302 584 6103 1268 140 95.600 571 611 11 3 41 71 3
SLN 643 91 71 1442 1049 460 6087 1407 123 93.470 586 640 8 4 43 43 5
WAS 694 59 103 1424 911 629 6349 1533 173 184.420 794 874 6 1 33 74 5

Fielding

Team ID G TC PO A E Fld% InOuts SB CS CS% PB
ARI 2656 7207 5428 1628 151 .969 17370 105 33 0 8
ATL 2687 7207 5361 1739 107 .973 17551 97 46 1.00 12
CHN 2759 7062 5338 1597 127 .964 17339 89 43 0 5
CIN 2710 7253 5516 1633 104 .972 17496 79 47 0 4
COL 2769 7131 5235 1793 103 .972 17260 115 27 0 6
FLO 2796 6998 5393 1487 118 .962 17351 129 42 0 8
HOU 2662 7099 5255 1756 88 .973 17160 65 29 0 11
LAN 2699 7104 5388 1619 97 .985 17678 89 39 0 5
MIL 2653 7114 5394 1609 111 .972 17221 82 21 0 6
NYN 2722 7041 5349 1584 108 .977 17110 66 34 0 7
PHI 2564 7083 5406 1591 86 .981 17466 95 37 1.00 10
PIT 2467 7254 5363 1811 80 .978 17022 107 43 0 13
SDN 2684 7136 5436 1591 109 .975 17410 100 42 0 12
SFN 2783 7003 5365 1539 99 .984 17355 107 42 3.00 9
SLN 2888 7226 5237 1876 113 .981 17289 44 28 1.00 5
WAS 2799 7301 5358 1773 170 .951 17095 89 38 1.00 9

West

team W L Att Rk SOP
Los Angeles Dodgers 95 67 3761655 1 1272
Colorado Rockies 92 70 2665080 2 1154
San Francisco Giants 88 74 2862110 3 1302
San Diego Padres 75 87 1919603 4 1187
Arizona Diamondbacks 70 92 2128765 5 1158

Central

team W L Att Rk SOP
St. Louis Cardinals 91 71 3343252 1 1049
Chicago Cubs 83 78 3168859 2 1272
Milwaukee Brewers 80 82 3037451 3 1104
Cincinnati Reds 78 84 1747919 4 1069
Houston Astros 74 88 2521076 5 1144
Pittsburg Pirates 62 99 1577853 6 919

East

team W L Att Rk SOP
Philadelphia Philies 93 69 3600693 1 1153
Florida Marlins 87 75 1464109 2 1248
Atlanta Braves 86 76 2373631 3 1232
New York Mets 70 92 3168571 4 1031
Washington Nationals 59 103 1817226 5 911

Awards

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Tagged:
2009 NLCS, 2009 NLDS1, 2009 NLDS2, 2009 World Series, Adam Wainwright, Adrian Gonzalez, Albert Pujols, Andre Ethier, Bobby Cox, Brad Hawpe, Chad Billingsley, Chase Utley, Chris Carpenter, Clayton Kershaw, Cliff Lee, Derrek Lee, Gary Sheffield, Hanley Ramirez, Harry Kalas, James Loney, Jayson Werth, Jeff Kent, Jimmy Rollins, Joel Pineiro, Jonathan Broxton, Jonathan Sanchez, Mark Mulder, Matt Holliday, Matt Kemp, Pablo Sandoval, Philadelphia Phillies, Prince Fielder, Randy Johnson, Raul Ibanez, Ryan Braun, Ryan Franklin, Ryan Howard, Shane Victorino, St. Louis Cardinals, Stephen Strasburg, Tim Lincecum, Todd Helton, Tony LaRussa, Troy Glaus, Troy Tulowitzki

Comments

  • Mike Ryan said: test 10:20AM 12/13/11
  • Anonymous said: where does my coment go 4:14PM 12/12/11
  • admin said: Curly Brown, 1888 4:46PM 12/09/11
  • Anonymous said: To bad Phillies couldnt beat NY in World Series 2:38PM 12/09/11
  • Anonymous said: Great season to bad phillies came up short 2:37PM 12/09/11
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