The list: Okie MVPs

Published: August 16, 2007
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Stillwater's Matt Holliday, second in National League hitting and third in RBIs, is a contender for the MVP award, especially if his Colorado Rockies make a late-season push.

Oklahomans have won eight MVP awards; the best seasons, in order, courtesy of historian Gary Sloan:

1. Mickey Mantle 1956: Triple Crown winner. No AL player came within 20 homers of Mantle's 52.

2. Johnny Bench 1970: Monster year — 48 homers, 148 RBIs from a 22-year-old, Gold Glove catcher.

3. Carl Hubbell 1933: Led NL in wins (23), ERA (1.66) and shutouts (10); second in strikeouts (166) and saves (5).

4. Paul Waner 1927: Led NL in batting by 19 points (hit .380) and in RBIs (131).

5. Carl Hubbell 1936: Led NL in ERA (2.31) by more than half a run. Also led NL in wins (26).

6. Johnny Bench 1972: Again led NL in home runs (40) and RBIs (125). Bench in the early '70s was as good a ballplayer as you'll ever find.

7. Mickey Mantle 1957: Hit .365 (Ted Williams hit .388) with 34 homers and 94 RBIs.

8. Mickey Mantle 1962: Strange voting. Mantle hit 19 fewer homers than Harmon Killebrew, drove in 37 fewer runs and scored only four more runs than the Killer. Yet the Yankees won the AL by five games over Killebrew's Twins, and Mantle won the MVP.