Major awards are frequently won by candidates who are not the most deserving, but 1979 was significant because it effected the narrative of Lynn and his teammate Rice. This narrative in turn had a strong impact on Hall of fame voting decades later. For fans of baseball in the 1970s, Lynn and Rice are linked as they were rookies together in 1975 and carried their Red Sox team to the World Series that year. Lynn won the MVP and Rookie of the Year honors that year. Three years later, in 1978 Rice emerged as the leagues best slugger and won the MVP.
In 37 years, Steinbrenner delivered seven world championships, countless tantrums, headlines and managerial firings, several horrendous trades, as well as several brilliant ones, one never-ending desire to win and hundreds of millions of dollars in support of that goal, but never a dull moment. That is the record on which the man should be judged. Baseball will miss him.