A look at the 3 White Sox AL MVPs

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Aug 18, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; The Chicago White Sox logo behind home plate before a game between the Chicago White Sox and the Texas Rangers at U.S Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports

Nellie Fox
AL MVP: 1959

Fox played 14 seasons with the White Sox, amounting to 2,115 games and 9,493 plate appearances (8,486 at-bats).

He finished his time as a White Sox (1950-63) with 35 home runs and 740 RBIs, including a White Sox batting average of .291. Fox also collected 2,470 hits as a White Sox, with 335 of those hits being doubles and 104 of them being triples.

But his MVP season came in ’59, where he led the majors in games played (156), plate appearances (717) and at-bats (624).

In ’59, Fox totaled 84 runs, 191 hits (34 doubles, six triples) and even two home runs, as the second baseman wasn’t known for his power game at the plate. Fox did have a very good bat in ’59, finishing with a .306 batting average, the third of three straight seasons where he had at least a .300 average (.317 in ’57 and .300 in ’58). His on-base percentage during his MVP campaign was .380, and he finished with a slugging percentage of .389.

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Fox walked 71 times in ’59 and struck out just 13 times all season in those aforementioned 624 at-bats. He also had five stolen bases and finished with 243 total bases that season.

Though in some categories his numbers were not even the best in a single season during his storied career, he did more than enough in a collective effort to earn the MVP award.

In fact, in ’59, Fox beat out teammates Luis Aparicio and Early Wynn, who were second and third in the voting. Fox had 16 first-place votes (88 percent of the share), and Aparicio had eight first-place votes.

In the final vote, Fox finished with 295 points, compared to the 255 by Aparicio. Wynn had 123 points. Also in that vote, teammate Jim Landis placed seventh in the voting with 66 points, and in ninth that season was another teammate in Sherm Lollar with 44 points in the final tally.

As a team, the White Sox in ’59 had the best overall regular season in the majors, winning the AL Pennant with a 94-60 record. The eventual World Series champion Brooklyn Dodgers were 88-68 in the regular season.

The White Sox lost the World Series to the Dodgers in six games (4-2).

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