The National League has multiple players who are in consideration for the MVP Award this season, that have been strong candidates in years past. There is also some players you never thought would be in the MVP race. The race should be interesting to see how it shapes up to be the rest of the season, but this is how I feel the race looks as of today:
1st - Joey Votto - Cincinnati Reds: Joey Votto is having the best first half of any player in the National League, and he is in the conversation for the MVP Award again this year. He is batting .345 with 14 homeruns, 47 RBI's, and an on-base percentage of .464. Joey Votto ranks first in walks with 60, first in slugging percentage (.619), first in OPS (1.082), and fifth in batting average. He has proved that he is one of the best first basemen in all of baseball, and that he is a legitimate MVP candidate. As long as the Reds continue to stay in the playoff race and Joey Votto continues to be on fire, he will be leading the N.L. MVP race.
2nd - David Wright - New York Mets: David Wright finally looks like he is back to being one of the best third basemen in the league after last season when he was injured and missed 60 games. He and R.A. Dickey are the two reasons why the Mets are above .500 and competitive this season. Through 80 games this season, Wright is batting .350 with 11 homeruns, 59 RBI's, and an on-base percentage of .439. David Wright currently ranks fourth in batting average, third in RBI's, fifth in runs (55), fourth in walks (48), and fourth in OPS (1.014). As long as the Mets remain in the playoff race, David Wright should remain above other players in the MVP race who are on team that are struggling this season. If David Wright can remain healthy, he will be a serious MVP candidate.
3rd - Ryan Braun - Milwaukee Brewers: Ryan Braun could easily be ranked higher because he is on pace to have an even better season then he did last year, when he won the MVP Award. If it wasn't for all of the offseason drama and being falsely accused for using a banned substance, he would be a top the MVP list. Braun is batting .304, with 24 homeruns, 60 RBI's, and an on-base percentage of .386. He is ranked first in homeruns, second in RBI's, ninth in runs (53), third in slugging percentage (.602), and sixth in OPS (.988). Braun will continue to produce no matter how bad the Brewers are, but if he wants to repeat as N.L. MVP he has to hope that the voters don't vote based on everything that happened this past offseason. The voters need to vote based on his stats and the facts because Braun has been a stong MVP candidate in the first half of the season.
4th - Andrew McCutchen - Pittsburgh Pirates: Andrew McCutchen is having a breakout season. He is a huge reason why the Pirates are in first place in the N.L. Central. He is batting .360 with 16 homeruns, 56 RBI's, and an on-base percentage of .413. He ranks in first in batting average, second in OPS (1.023), and he ranks in the top ten in homeruns, RBI's, and runs (54). Andrew McCutchen has been the only real offense for the Pirates and he will be in the conversation for the MVP Award throughout the rest of the season.
5th - Carlos Beltran - St. Louis Cardinals: The aging veteran in Carlos Beltran has been a nice surprise this season for the Cardinals. Many people thought he could be a good player for the Cardinals but no one thought he would be in the MVP Award race. Beltran has a .306 batting average with 20 homeruns, 65 RBI's, and a on-base percentage of .392. He ranks second in homeruns, first in RBI's, and he is ranked in the top ten in batting average, walks (41), and OPS (.951) in the National League. Carlos Beltran has been a good player in the fist half of the season, but I don't think he will be a real contender for the MVP Award by the end of the season.
Players who are still in the MVP Award Race: Carlos Gonzalez, Melky Cabrera, Carlos Ruiz, and R.A. Dickey.
This season there are multiple players who have a great chance to win the MVP Award this year in the National League. It will be very interesting to see if voters will vote for Ryan Braun, and if Carlos Ruiz, who has had a great season so far, will get any MVP consideration. Any of my nine players listed have a chance to win the award, but some of these players won't get as much attention because of there team's lack of success this season.
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