The top two National League Most Valuable Player candidates belong to the same team, and anchor the middle of the Milwaukee Brewers lineup. However, Ryan Braun has stood out a little more with his career-highs and league-leading numbers.
Braun leads the National League with 92 runs scored, second with a .334 batting average, and fifth in RBIs with 88. Combine those numbers with 25 home runs, 30 stolen bases, a league-leading .593 slugging percentage and you have your National League Most Valuable Player. Oh yeah, Braun has also led his team to an 81-54 record, the second-best record in the National League.
Braun has no weaknesses in his game this year, and he has stepped up against top competition. He has hit .417 against division-leading Arizona, .500 against league-leading Philadelphia, and even .700 against the New York Yankees. He has also played great in the outfield, committing only one error, and tossing out five runners on the base paths.
Need more proof of Braun’s magnitude in the lineup? He missed eight games due to an injury in early July, and teammate Prince Fielder hit only 7-for-26 with three RBIs without him in the lineup, which is paltry compared to Fielder’s .295 batting average and 102 RBIs over the course of the entire season. Also, in the month of August during the stretch run, Braun is hitting .379 with four home runs, 17 RBIs, and 12 walks. The Brewers would still be battling for the playoffs instead of booking their hotel rooms for October without the National League’s Most Valuable Player.