The Baseball Bloggers Alliance today named writer Joe Posnanski the winner of the inaugural Writer of the Year Award, honoring the top internet writer. Posnanski, who writes for the print version of Sports Illustrated as well as maintaining his own blog and Twitter account, was the overwhelming selection from the BBA membership.
The Writer of the Year Award was created by the BBA to honor those writers who, beyond being exceptionally great at their craft, have taken to the internet in a full and vigorous fashion. Voters were instructed to take into account not only the writing abilities of the nominees but also their online presense, whether via blog or other media, as well as how they interact with their followers and fans.
“After a week where the ugly side of writing was put on display on two different occasions (from T.J. Simers and Murray Chass), it is an honor for the Baseball Bloggers Alliance to honor one of the great writers of the day. Joe Posnanski is a treasure to anyone that spends time online. Whether from reading his great blog entries or following his Twitter account, rarely a day goes by without a follower finding a gem,” stated Daniel Shoptaw, founder and president of the Alliance.
Voters were allowed to vote for three of the fifteen nominees, casting a first, second and third place ballot. Those ballots were tabulated based on a 5-3-1 point scale.
Posnanski received 218 points, including 35 first place votes from the 110 ballots cast. Rob Neyer, formerly of ESPN and now at SB Nation, was second with twelve first place selections and 136 points overall. Rounding out the top three was former Boston Globe writer Peter Gammons, now working at MLB Network and MLB.com, with 134 total points and 20 first place votes. ESPN writer Buster Olney and Hardball Talk blogger Craig Calcaterra were the only other nominees to tabulate ten percent of the total vote.
The BBA is planning to honor the inaugural winner by changing the name of the award next year to the Joe Posnanski Award to fit their existing award naming scheme. The Alliance votes on postseason awards including the Willie Mays Award for top rookie in each league, the Connie Mack Award for top manager, the Goose Gossage Award for top reliever, the Walter Johnson Award for top pitcher, and the Stan Musial Award for top player.
The Baseball Bloggers Alliance was formed in the fall of 2009 to encourage cooperation and collaboration between baseball bloggers of all major league teams as well as those that follow baseball more generally. As of this writing, the organization consists of 275 blogs spanning all 30 major league squads as well as general baseball writing.
The official website for the Baseball Bloggers Alliance is baseballbloggersalliance.wordpress.com. They may also be followed on Twitter with their account @baseballblogs and hashmark #BBBA. The BBA also has an app at both the Apple App Store and the Android Marketplace.