Sports

Race for MLB MVP

Major League Baseball reached the end of the regular season and is ready for the World Series to begin. However, before the conclusion of the 2015 season, a player from the American and National league will be chosen to be the Most Valuable Player (MVP). The award is given to the player who statistically had the best, or above average stats, and proved to be an asset to their team. Last season’s MVPs were Mike Trout of the Angels, and Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers.

Mike Trout’s numbers were phenomenal last season. He batted .287, with 36 home runs and 111 RBI’s. He helped the Angels claim first place with a record of 98-64. Clayton Kershaw had an outstanding season. Kershaw won the MVP and Cy Young award, making him the 10th pitcher in MLB history to accomplish such a historic achievement. He went 21-3, with an ERA of 1.77 and 239 strikeouts. The two individuals who are bound to claim the MVP title this season will be third basemen Josh Donaldson of the Toronto Blue Jays and right fielder Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals.

The Toronto Blue Jays were in second place for the majority of the 2015 season, but with the accusations of players like David Price, the Jays managed to claim first place. Josh Donaldson played a major role for the Jays the majority of the season. Donaldson has been a leader for the Jays and stepped up in crucial situations, whether it was defensively or offensively. Donaldson leads the Jays with 41 home runs (tied for fifth in the league) and leads the league with a 123 RBIs. Donaldson nearly has a .300 batting average. On the other hand, those stats are referred to as “the glamour stats.” There are other stats that are taken into consideration when picking a MVP. Donaldson leads his team and the league with 122 runs and has an impressive on base percentage plus slugging (OPS) of .939. The power hitters in baseball are known for striking out, yet Donaldson managed to only strikeout 133 times out of 579 at-bats. Designated hitter Chris Davis of the Orioles currently leads the league with 208 strikeouts. Donaldson surpassed his 174 career high in hits this season as he finished off with 184 hits. If Donaldson played this intensely last season, I am positive he would have beaten Trout in the MVP voting.

Washington Nationals’ superstar Bryce Harper has put up fantastic numbers this season. Harper started off the season extremely hot and has not slowed down since. The Nationals finished with a respectable record of 83-79. In defense of the Nationals record, the National League is playing at a higher level than the American League. The Nationals’ record should not play a role in Harper’s journey to claiming MVP. Harper finished with the third best batting average in baseball.  He batted .330; eight points lower than first place M  iguel Cabrera.

Harper also has 42 home runs and 99 RBIs to complement his stats. Harper’s runs batted in this season are low considering he has 41 home runs, but he managed to get on base this season. He also leads the league with an on base percentage (OBP) of .460. Harper is a player the Nationals counted on this season to get on base and provide runs. Harper had a Triple Crown kind of season, as he had a superb batting average, and a muckle of home runs. The Nationals had trouble getting men on base when Harper came to bat, and in result his runs batted in are lower compared to other power hitters in the league. Bryce Harper has a good chance of being MVP this season, but Zack Greinke is not one that should be slept on, as he has put up outstanding numbers. Zack Greinke finished the season with 19-3, with an unbelievable ERA of 1.66.

Overall, Donaldson and Harper are the frontrunners of the MVP race. With the playoffs over these two player just have to wait until the World Series are over and see if they are crowned MVPs.

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