Based on media hype, this race isn't even close... Jose Reyes is the guy that gets the most publicity and is more well known (if you don't believe me, check out the All-Star voting totals, where so far Reyes is first among NL SS and Ramirez is not in the top 5). But both are under 25 and doing fantastic things for their teams.
But who is better?
First, a look at last year's numbers. Both were fantastic and have some awards to prove it, as Reyes was an All-Star and Ramirez was the NL Rookie of the Year. Jose Reyes batted an even .300 with a .354 OBP, but also showed solid power and a .487 SLG, as he had a very good 66 XBH (30 2B, 17 3B, 19 HR). This was good for an OPS+ of 118. He also stole 64 bases with an excellent 79% success rate. He had 6.27 RC/27.
Ramirez was no slouch either. All he did was bat .292 with a nearly identical (to Reyes) .353 OBP and .480 SLG, as he had 74 XBH in 2006 (46 2B, 11 3B, 17 HR). This was good for a 116 OPS+. He wasn't quite as good of a base stealer as Reyes, but he did steal 51 bases with a 77% success rate. He had 6.00 RC/27.
So looking at the numbers, at least offensively, they were nearly identical in value, though Reyes was maybe slightly better with the extra stolen bases.
In 2007, however, Ramirez has been better so far in my opinion. Both have been awesome, but here are their numbers:
Jose Reyes - 311 BA/395 OBP/474 SLG/869 OPS/136 OPS+/28 SB (84% success), 7.02 RC/27
Hanley Ramirez - 317 BA/392 OBP/510 SLG/902 OPS/144 OPS+/15 SB (78% success), 7.16 RC/27
From the looks of things, Ramirez is hitting for more power than Reyes, and Reyes is again stealing more bases. If you look at RC or OPS+, Ramirez has the slight edge, while Reyes holds a slight edge in VORP.
Age is nearly a wash, as Reyes is only about 6 months older than Ramirez.
If given a choice, I think I might have to take Hanley Ramirez. Reyes creates a little more havoc on the basepaths, but I think Ramirez might have a little more power. He has shown it this year, and he had a little more power in the Minors than Reyes did. At the very least, the two are really, really awesome and really close in value. Reyes may get the most publicity, but Ramirez is one of the best young talents in the MLB.
Who would you choose? Please cast a vote and then your reasons in the comments.