National League MVP Predictions

Can Anyone Honestly Give Albert Pujols A Run For His Money In The NL MVP Race?

9/16/09 in MLB   |   Pat   |   5234 respect

A couple weeks ago, we looked at the AL MVP race. Most people agreed that Joe Mauer seems to be the favorite there, but it's time to look at the NL MVP. Honestly, this one looks like a lock, but let's see who has a chance anyway.

The favorite:
Albert Pujols, 1B, St Louis Cardinals

It's no secret that Pujols is the clear favorite here. He's leading all of baseball in home runs and RBI, and is 2nd in the NL in batting average. He leads the entire league in slugging percentage by 80 points, and his 1.139 OPS is the highest we've seen since Barry Bonds was in his steroid-induced prime.

Basically, Albert Pujols is the best hitter in baseball. And it's not even close. He's also a solid defensive first baseman, and the unquestionable team leader in St Louis. There's really nothing bad to say about the guy. He's the best player of our time, he's having a career year, and he's a class act to boot. He's also the single biggest reason the Cardinals have a huge lead in their division right now.

He's the runaway favorite here, but let's take a look at some guys who might challenge him...

Hanley Ramirez, SS, Florida Marlins

Why he has a chance: He's leading the NL in batting average, by a solid 27 points. He also fills the stat sheet pretty nicely everywhere else, with 23 HR, 99 RBI and 25 SB. He doesn't dominate anywhere else besides his batting average, but he is a very complete offensive player, and extremely well-rounded.

Why he won't win: His team won't make the playoffs, which will hurt his chances, and he's also just not as good as Pujols. He has the batting average and some stolen bases, but Pujols is miles ahead of him in pretty much every other offensive statistic. Also, Hanley isn't exactly a Gold Glove shortstop, which is the only thing that could have given him a chance. In any other year, I think he has a better shot, but Pujols is just too good this year. Also, Ramirez has had some clubhouse issues that would severely hamper his status as "most valuable".

Prince Fielder, 1B, Milwaukee Brewers

Why he has a chance: He's tied with Pujols for the league lead with 126 RBI, and he's 3rd in HR with 39. His .998 OPS is also second in the NL.

Why he won't win: The Brewers are a losing team, and Fielder's sup-.300 batting average kills his chances. Not knocking Fielder, but he just doesn't compete with Pujols this year.

Chase Utley, 2B, Philadelphia Phillies

Why he has a chance: He's the best player on a very good team, and he does it at a position where you don't normally get the huge numbers that Utley is putting up. He's leading all NL 2B in HR, RBI, OPS and runs. He has been the most consistent player for the 1st-place Phillies, as well.

Why he won't win: His numbers are great for a second baseman, but they don't even compare with Pujols. Anywhere. Not even close.

Honorable Mentions: Mark Reynolds, Pablo Sandoval, Derek Lee

Who do you think is the 2009 NL MVP? Discuss it here.
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9/17/09   |   rogercarver1960   |   126 respect

Albert Pujols is the MVP (nickname or no nickname)!!!

9/16/09   |   mrturk   |   20 respect

Albert all the way - no contest.

9/16/09   |   sdhman

elevenbravo138again wrote:
Unless you want to go back in time and put Stan Musial, Hack Wilson or Willie Mays on the list I don't see how Albert 'No Decent Nickname' Pujols fails to win the NL MVP.In Alternate Earth 3 Pujols has stiff competition.

Pujols is a better hitter than all three of those guys.    Wilson .940 career OPS, Mays .941, .976.  Pujols has a career 1.058.  He wins hands down.   That makes him a Legend among Immortals

9/16/09   |   fairfld61   |   10 respect

people please! pujols is not of this world! we will have to make a new wing at cooperstown for all the hardware and bling! and the best part is that its steroid free mr. bonds. bye!

9/16/09   |   Jeff_P   |   19919 respect

so happy for derrek lee, being a cubs fan, people have wanted his ass out of town, the man had a wrist injury, and now look at his numbers when healthy, plus he is a CLASS ACT, ON AND OFF THE FIELD !!!!!!!!!!!!

9/16/09   |   ms_hippie_queen   |   30484 respect

simply: no.

9/16/09   |   roxanna1961

No one can challenge Pujols-he is indeed a man among boys. He is also CONSISTENTLY at the top, for all of his major league career.

9/16/09   |   elevenbravo138again   |   1163 respect

Unless you want to go back in time and put Stan Musial, Hack Wilson or Willie Mays on the list I don't see how Albert 'No Decent Nickname' Pujols fails to win the NL MVP.In Alternate Earth 3 Pujols has stiff competition.

9/16/09   |   mk_donley   |   2554 respect

Albert Pujols wins the NL MVP in a landslide!

9/16/09   |   Heyhey1970   |   194 respect

No doubt that Pujols is running away with it.  I want to thank Derek Lee for having his best season since the broken wrist 3 years ago.  He deserves the Honorable Mention on a team where lots of people quit playing midseason.

9/16/09   |   tpowell25   |   1627 respect

I debated a week or so ago the fact that Hanley deserved to be considered, and for good reason (lack of a supporting cast has caused him to carry the Marlins on his back all by himself).  But after watching Pujols just absolutely dominate for this long in the season without a hiccup is amazing.  Give Hanley a pat on the butt and a nice raise, but this shouldn't even be a topic anymore, IMO.  Pujols could go hitless for the rest of the season and still win it (was that little much?  yea, probably).

9/16/09   |   alsportsfreak   |   2 respect

It is the NL, i mean go to the AL and it's a whol different story you got Joe Mauer, Teixeira, Suzuki, but in the NL Albert hands down.

9/16/09   |   drn0iswatr   |   731 respect

what Pujols has done this season makes him a man among boys.