The following is a detailed look at the 2011 National League Most Valuable Player voting:
When Ryan Braun was notified of the NL MVP results, he immediately proceeded to call his mother, his agent, and then Green Bay Packers quarterback and fellow Cali-native Aaron Rodgers, who Braun calls his “best athlete friend.” His message to the leader of the 11-0 Packers was clear: your turn. Rodgers, forever a Wisconsin legend thanks to his Super Bowl XLV MVP performance, has the inside track for the MVP award this season and was happy for his pal. “I’m proud of him,” Rodgers said in an ESPN interview, “he had an incredible season.” Rodgers was also thankful to play in front of the best fans around. “It’s fun to know that he’s going to be in Milwaukee for a long time,” he said. “I’m hopefully going to be here for a long time, and we appreciate the opportunity to play in Wisconsin for sports teams and their fans who really care about their players.” Braun may now have the award, but Rodgers has the title – something Braun craves. “[Rodgers has] accomplished far more in his sport than I have in mine,” stated Braun, “it inspires me to try to get better and ultimately to win a championship of my own for the Milwaukee Brewers.” One day, Milwaukee. One day.
1. Boston Red Sox (39-26; 1st AL East)
Adrian Gonzalez continues to lead the planet in runs batted in with 60.
2. Milwaukee Brewers (38-28; 1st NL Central)
Since Zack Greinke’s return, the Brewers have the best record in baseball; they find themselves all alone atop the division for the first time since early June of 2009.
3. Philadelphia Phillies (40-26; 1st NL East)
Cliff Lee leads the majors in strikeouts (107) while Roy Halladay is second (106).
4. St. Louis Cardinals (38-29; 2nd NL Central)
A weekend sweep at Miller Park has knocked the Cards out of 1st place in the division.
5. New York Yankees (36-27; 2nd AL East)
Curtis Granderson (20) and Mark Teixeira (19) have the most homers among any duo in Bigs.
6. Texas Rangers (36-31; 1st AL West)
Alexi Ogando is still the AL Cy Young favorite with a 7 wins, no losses, a sparkling 2.10 ERA and an other worldly 0.90 WHIP.
7. Atlanta Braves (38-28; 2nd NL East)
The Braves have rattled off a NL best 6 consecutive wins to come within 2 games of division leading Philadelphia.
8. San Francisco Giants (37-29; 1st NL West)
With Pablo Sandoval set to return, the Giants (8-4 in June) are looking like they’ve forgot all about Mr. Posey.
9. Detroit Tigers (35-30; 1st AL Central)
Consistent play and an abysmal fall by Cleveland (1-9 in their last 10 games) has the Tigers tied for 1st place.
10. Seattle Mariners (34-32; 2nd AL West)
Brandon League is 18 for 21 in save opportunities with a 1.04 WHIP.
If the season ended today:
AL MVP: Adrian Gonzalez – 1B – BOS
NL MVP: Prince Fielder – 1B – MIL
AL Cy Young: Alexi Ogando – SP – TEX
NL Cy Young: Roy Halladay – SP – PHI
1. Philadelphia Phillies (33-20; 1st NL East)
Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels have combined to go 17-9 with a 2.93 ERA, 250 strikeouts and only 44 walks.
2. Cleveland Indians (31-19; 1st AL Central)
Asdrubal Cabrera is hitting .452 (19/42) with runners in scoring position this season.
3. Boston Red Sox (30-23; 1st AL East)
Adrian Gonzalez (45) and Kevin Youkilis (34) trail only Milwaukee’s Prince Fielder (42) and Ryan Braun (38) for the duo with the most RBI.
4. Florida Marlins (30-21; 2nd NL East)
Leo Nunez leads all of baseball with 18 saves in 19 chances.
5. St. Louis Cardinals (32-22; 1st NL Central)
Lance Berkman (.354 AVG/.473 OBP) and Matt Holliday (.347/.440) are making up for Albert Pujols’ slow start (.257/.326).
6. Milwaukee Brewers (29-24; 2nd NL Central)
Ryan Braun ranks top 10 in the majors in runs (40), hits (62), triples (3), homers (12), RBI (38), total bases (114), walks (31) and steals (13).
7. Arizona Diamondbacks (29-24; 1st NL West)
Superb pitching has led Arizona to a MLB best 9-1 in their last 10 games.
8. New York Yankees (28-23; 2nd AL East)
Derek Jeter is only 20 hits away from becoming the first New York Yankee to reach 3,000.
9. Texas Rangers (28-25; 1st AL West)
Josh Hamilton has driven in a run in 4 of 6 games since coming off the disabled list May 23.
10. Tampa Bay Rays (28-24; 3rd AL East)
Jeremy Hellickson, 6-3 with a 2.80 ERA, looks to be the early favorite for AL Rookie of the Year.
If the season ended today:
AL MVP: Jose Bautista – RF – TOR
NL MVP: Ryan Braun – LF – MIL
AL Cy Young: Trevor Cahill – SP – OAK
NL Cy Young: Jair Jurrjens – SP – ATL