With one week to go in the season, there isn't much left to influence the division races -- but the same isn't true for individual honors.
But Pendleton has better numbers than he had when he won a
year ago, and Sheffield still has an outside chance at winning the Triple Crown. The Padres' late fade will hurt Sheffield.
Prediction: Sheffield deserves it, but Atlanta's repeat peformance will be enough for Pendleton to do the same.
* Cy Young Award: A month ago this wasn't even a contest, but Atlanta left-hander Tom Glavine has stumbled in his bid to repeat. That has opened the door for others.
Chicago's Greg Maddux appears to have benefited the most from Glavine's slide. But a pair of ex-Orioles, Dennis Martinez of Montreal and Mike Morgan of Chicago, the Expos' Ken Hill and Bob Tewksbury of St. Louis deserve at least supporting consideration.
However, Maddux is the only one with a chance to join Glavine as a 20-game winner, and that, along with his superior ERA, could weigh heavily with the voters.
Prediction: Maddux on a close call.
* Rookie of the Year: This was not a very good year for first-year players in the NL.
Derrick May, son of ex-Oriole Davey May, has begun to fulfill his promise with the Cubs, and Eric Karros is about the only good thing that has happened to the Los Angeles Dodgers this year.
Prediction: Karros will be a unanimous choice.
* Manager of the Year: It seems as if Jim Leyland could win annually because he's a contender every year. But this is more open than it might appear, even though Tom Lasorda and Jeff Torborg aren't under consideration.
Felipe Alou has done a remarkable job since taking over at Montreal. Joe Torre has managed to stay over .500 most of the year with a mixed bag in St. Louis. And Bobby Cox deserves a lot of credit for the success in Atlanta.
Prediction: Alou will win, but they should call it the Jim Leyland Award.
P.S.: In case you're interested, Toronto beats Atlanta in the World Series.