In the end, after all the speculation and arguments made by the recliner chair sportswriters and beer-swilling baseball prognosticators in the sports bars across the fruited plains, the voting wasn't even close. Some even argued Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees would win the American League's 2017 Most Valuable Player Award because, if nothing else and all things being equal, he's in New York, the media capital of the world.

But in the end, all things weren't equal, Judge had a great season, but the Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve was voted MVP by a 405-279 margin. Not even close.

Getty Images - Jose Altuve 2017 AL MVP at the Houston Astros World Series Victory Parade in downtown Houston

The five-time All-Star had a spectacular season by winning his third batting title, leading the Majors in hits (204), hitting 24 regular season homers, and finishing with a .346 batting average. By the way, the humble and diminutive 5'5" Altuve ranked first in the AL in infield hits (35), drove in 81 runs, stole 32 bases, and had the biggest smile on the last night of the season, earning a win over the LA Dodgers in the World Series. All this, and he's still only 27. There's much more to come.

Astro pitchers and catchers report February 23rd. Bring on 2018!