Kolten Wong’s 2019 Season

Hayden See, Reporter

After a down year, Kolten Wong is making his case for the team MVP.

With the season over, Kolten Wong put up career numbers; his batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage are all personal bests. Additionally, he is the most consistent he’s ever been defensively at second base. He leads the Cardinals in defensive runs saved, a metric that aims to measure how much a player’s defense helps or hurts their team. He and Paul DeJong lead the league in double plays turned this year. 

“There is no doubt in my mind that Kolten Wong is the Cardinals MVP this year. He has always been a gold glover,” senior Britt Schriber said.

In 2018, Wong was constantly battling for a consistent spot in the lineup. Despite his solid defense, then manager Mike Matheny was very whimsical when it came to his lineup. There was noted tension between the two parties; Wong said in spring training 2018, “play me or trade me.” That tension, among other things, Wong said put a lot of pressure on his shoulders day in and day out. Under new manager Mike Shildt, Wong seems to be playing the best of his career. The stretch since Shildt took over has been the best of his career.

“Wong under Shildt and Wong under Matheny is completely different. It’s night and day,” senior Blake Ebner said.

Wong leads all second basemen by a large margin in defensive runs saved and ultimate zone rating, a metric that measures a fielder’s range. He has more than double the defensive runs saved as the player behind him. 

“If he doesn’t win the award, I don’t know if he ever will,” senior Karley Quinn said.