The Most Silent NL MVP Candidate

Maybe it’s just me, but MVP, Rookie of the Year, and Cy Young discussions are some of my favorite discussions to have in baseball. Pretty much anyone that has a clue about the sport can speak on the topic, and you won’t get any showoffs trying to make outrageous statements because the conversation pretty much writes itself. If you try and tell me somebody like Andrelton Simmons should be a candidate just because he’s batting .296 and is good on defense, I will tell you that you should learn how to not talk anymore.

This year, the NL MVP has been notoriously close, but mostly for the fact that nobody has broken away from the crowd with ridiculous seasons. The AL is looking at J.D. Martinez and Mookie Betts competing for a batting title on the same team, Jose Ramirez is having another crazy year as the quietest superstar in baseball, and Mike Trout continues to be baseball’s messiah. In the NL, you have a few players that experts are suggesting, but there’s one player I simply don’t understand why he isn’t in the discussion.

Trevor Story. The guy that hit a baseball that is currently in orbit around Earth.

I have not heard many people use his name in the discussion, but the Rockies are currently one game ahead of the Dodgers and Story is a big reason why. Here’s are some of the top NL MVP Candidates and their most focused-on stats:

Matt Carpenter, STL .270 AVG, 35 HR, 77 RBI
Freddie Freeman, ATL .306 AVG, 21 HR, 84 RBI
Javier Baez, CHC .294 AVG, 30 HR, 100 RBI
Nolan Arenado, COL .297 AVG, 32 HR, 95 RBI
Max Scherzer, WAS 17 Wins, 2.31 ERA, 271 Ks
Aaron Nola, PHI 16 Wins, 2.29 ERA, 196 Ks
Jacob deGrom, NYM 8 Wins (lol), 1.68 ERA, 230 Ks
Christian Yelich, MIL .316 AVG, 18 HR, 61 RBI

And here is Story’s line:

Trevor Story, COL .293 AVG, 31 HR, 96 RBI

Not to mention (but I will), he also has 25 stolen bases, the most of any of the other candidates. Now, I certainly believe stats don’t tell the entire story (no pun intended). There are factors that make a player an MVP Candidate and factors that don’t. For example, some players stats might be better because they are part of a more dangerous lineup. The Rockies have 2 MVP-caliber players, Charlie Blackmon, and former batting champ D.J. LeMahieu all in the top 5 positions in their lineup. That is going to inflate your RBI stats, as well as get you more hitable pitches because pitchers have to get outs somewhere. Matt Carpenter, on the other hand, is not part of as dangerous of a lineup with the only fearful hitters being Jose Martinez and Marcell Ozuna. Therefore, his RBI total and average will depreciate. For a reason as simple as this, that makes Carpenter that much more valuable to his team than Story, and a large reason why he’s on the consistent discussion list as opposed to the Rockies shortstop.

Image result for trevor story
Image via USA Today

But, I believe Story’s numbers are too good to be ignored. As a middle infielder that is going to finish with 35+ HR and 100+ RBI with an average floating around .300, that cannot be played off as a slightly above average season. Baez is supposedly the front-runner and he’s having the same season as Story, just on the other side of the second base bag.

I’m not saying he needs to be crowned the winner right now, but in a year that nobody is running away with the title, it would be cool to see an underdog pull away in September and walk away with the award. It should be an interesting battle for the rest of the season to see who comes out on top.

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