Boston's Betts, Milwaukee's Yelich win MVP Awards

NEW YORK (AP) — Boston's Mookie Betts and Milwaukee's Christian Yelich were runaway winners of the Most Valuable Player awards after the 26-year-old outfielders each led their teams to first-place finishes with dominant seasons that included batting titles.

Betts received 28 first-place votes and 410 points from the Baseball Writers' Association of America in balloting announced Thursday.

Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout, a two-time MVP, followed with one first-place vote and 265 points. Trout tied the record of four second-place finishes shared by Stan Musial, Ted Williams and Albert Pujols. Trout won in 2014 and 2016; was finished second in '12, '13 and '15; and was fourth in 2017.

Cleveland third baseman Jose Ramirez was third with 208 points, and Red Sox designated hitter J.D. Martinez was next with one first and 198 points.

Betts hit a major league-leading .346 with 32 homers, 80 RBIs and 30 stolen bases as the leadoff hitter for the Red Sox, who won a team-record 108 games and their fourth World Series title in 15 seasons. Votes were submitted before the postseason.

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The best photos from the 2018 World Series
BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 24: in Game Two of the 2018 World Series at Fenway Park on October 24, 2018 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 26: Brock Holt #12 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates as he scores a thirteenth inning run against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game Three of the 2018 World Series at Dodger Stadium on October 26, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 26: Manny Machado #8 of the Los Angeles Dodgers hits a sixth inning single off the wall against the Boston Red Sox in Game Three of the 2018 World Series at Dodger Stadium on October 26, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 26: Austin Barnes #15 of the Los Angeles Dodgers collides with Eduardo Nunez #36 of the Boston Red Sox while fielding a wild pitch during the thirteenth inning in Game Three of the 2018 World Series at Dodger Stadium on October 26, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 26: Eduardo Nunez #36 of the Boston Red Sox falls into the stands after catching a ball in foul territory for the second out of the thirteenth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game Three of the 2018 World Series at Dodger Stadium on October 26, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Austin Barnes tags Boston Red Sox's Ian Kinsler at home while trying to score on a fly ball by Eduardo Nunez during the 10th inning in Game 3 of the World Series baseball game on Friday, Oct. 26, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Kenta Maeda looks up as Boston Red Sox's Andrew Benintendi scores on a three-run double by Steve Pearce during the ninth inning in Game 4 of the World Series baseball game on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Los Angeles. Center is Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Austin Barnes. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Los Angeles Dodgers' Justin Turner tries to make the throw on a single by Boston Red Sox's Jackie Bradley Jr. during the third inning in Game 3 of the World Series baseball game on Friday, Oct. 26, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Fans cheer from the top of Dodger Stadium during Game 4 of the World Series baseball game between the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 23: The dugout reacts as Eduardo Nunez #36 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates his three-run home run during the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game One of the 2018 World Series at Fenway Park on October 23, 2018 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 23: Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox steals second base during the first inning against Manny Machado #8 of the Los Angeles Dodgersin Game One of the 2018 World Series at Fenway Park on October 23, 2018 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Dodgers' Max Muncy scores ahead of the throw to Boston Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon on a sacrifice fly by Los Angeles Dodgers' Manny Machado during the seventh inning of Game 1 of the World Series baseball game Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018, in Boston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Boston Red Sox's Eduardo Nunez reacts as he runs the bases after hitting a three-run home run during the seventh inning of Game 1 of the World Series baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018, in Boston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Boston Red Sox's Eduardo Nunez reacts after hitting a three-run home run during the seventh inning of Game 1 of the World Series baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018, in Boston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
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Both batting champions won MVP awards for the first time since San Francisco's Buster Posey and Detroit's Miguel Cabrera in 2012.

Yelich got 29 first-place votes and 415 points, and the other first-place vote went to New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom, the NL Cy Young Award winner, who finished fifth. Chicago Cubs infielder Javier Baez was second with 250 points, followed by Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado with 203.

Acquired from the payroll-paring Miami Marlins about a month before spring training, the 26-year-old Yelich won the first batting title in Brewers history with a .326 average. He set career highs with 36 homers and 110 RBIs and had a 1.000 OPS.

Yelich nearly became the NL's first Triple Crown winner since Joe Medwick in 1937, finishing two homers shy of Arenado and one RBI back of Baez. Yelich was especially impressive in the second half, hitting .367 with 25 homers and 67 RBIs — including 11 homers in August and 10 in September.

Milwaukee reached the playoffs for the first time in seven years, swept Colorado in the Division Series then lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers in a seven-game League Championship Series, falling one win short of its first World Series appearance since 1982.

Yelich gets a $100,000 bonus for winning, and the price of the 2022 team option in his contract increases by $1 million to $16 million.

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