MILWAUKEE Last season, there was little arguing whether Milwaukee's Ryan Braun or Los Angeles' Matt Kemp deserved NL MVP consideration. Kemp led the NL in home runs (39) and RBI (126) and added 40 stolen bases, while Braun finished just short of him in all three categories and led the league in slugging percentage and OPS.
But with the direction Braun's Brewers were heading in -- their first division title in 29 years -- compared to the direction of Kemp's Dodgers, who finished just a few ticks over .500, the award ultimately landed on Braun's mantel.
Through 11 games of the 2012 season, however, Braun's and Kemp's teams are in entirely different places.
The Dodgers are the hottest team in baseball, having blazed their way to Miller Park with a 9-1 record before coming two outs from another win Tuesday night. George Kottaras' walk-off two-run double in a 5-4 victory made the Brewers 5-6 and helped them sidestep a five-game slump -- something that happened only twice all of last ...