Slowed by a quadriceps injury in April and May, Rodriguez followed his 2007 MVP campaign with another big offensive year for the Yankees. In just 138 games, he had 35 home runs, 103 RBIs and scored 104 runs, while batting .302.
2 of 11Chuck Solomon/SI
While Francisco Rodriguez set the single-season saves record for the Angels, Rivera put together perhaps the most dominant season of his stellar career. The Yankees' closer set career bests in ERA (1.40) and WHIP (0.67), and finished fourth in the league with 39 saves.
3 of 11Damian Strohmeyer/SI
The Twins' 25-year old backstop won his second AL batting crown this season with a .328 average. He notched career highs in runs (98) and RBIs (85), won his second Silver Slugger award and earned his first Gold Glove.
4 of 11Thomas E. Witte/SI
The 2008 AL Cy Young Award winner, Lee went a major league-best 22-3 this season with a 2.54 earned-run average. Demoted to the minors last year, he rebounded to set career-best numbers in virtually every pitching category, while earning more than a quarter of his team's 81 wins.
5 of 11Damian Strohmeyer/SI
Even though he missed the last month of the season with a fractured wrist, Quentin finished second in the AL with 36 home runs and won his first Silver Slugger. In his first season in Chicago and his first as a regular, he batted .288, drove in 100 runs and scored 96 more for the Central Division champs.
6 of 11Greg Nelson/SI
In his first season in Texas, Hamilton got off to a torrid start. He was named the American League Player of the Month for April and May (a first in AL history) and went into the All-Star break with 21 home runs and 95 RBIs. He finished the season with 32 round-trippers, a .304 average and a league-best 130 RBIs.
7 of 11John Iacono/SI
The 2007 AL Rookie of the Year led the league in runs (118), hits (213) and doubles (54), and he finished second with a .326 batting average. Pedroia also earned his first Gold Glove and led the Red Sox to a Wild Card win and eventually to the ALCS.
8 of 11Winslow Townson/SI
Youkilis finished 3rd in the AL in slugging percentage (.569), 4th in RBIs (115), extra base hits (76), and OPS (.958); and 6th in batting average (.312). A first-time All-Star, Youkilis already won the American League's Hank Aaron Award, which goes to the league's top hitter.
9 of 11Tom Dahlin/SI
Morneau put together another solid season in Minnesota, and, thanks to a playoff game, played in 163 games in 2008. The 2006 AL MVP batted .300 for the year, scored 97 runs, and had 129 RBIs -- the second-most in the league.
10 of 11Winslow Townson/SI
In 2008, Francisco Rodriguez put together one of the most prolific seasons ever for a closer. He shattered Bobby Thigpen's record for most saves in a season (57) and set the new mark at 62. The league-leader in appearances, Rodriguez posted a 2.24 ERA and fanned 77 hitters in 68.1 innings.
11 of 11Brad Mangin/SI
Cleveland's speedy centerfielder turned into more of a power threat in 2008, posting 33 home runs and 90 RBIs out of the leadoff spot (both career-highs). He also stole 38 bases, won his second Golf Glove Award and was voted to his third All-Star team.
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