Found November 22, 2011 on
Fox Sports Wisconsin:
MILWAUKEE He is the face of the franchise. He is the team's most consistent offensive performer. He's signed to the longest and richest contract in franchise history.
And now, Ryan Braun is the National League's Most Valuable Player.
Braun was announced as the winner Tuesday afternoon, beating out the Dodgers' Matt Kemp and his own teammate, Prince Fielder. It was a well-deserved honor for a player who has helped put a small-market franchise back on the map and into baseball's postseason twice in four years.
But moving forward, Braun may have to shoulder much, much more of the load.
For all of Braun's success in 2011 and there was plenty of it he had a lot of help, especially from Fielder, whose big bat and tendency to crush baseballs provided Braun the kind of protection most big league players can only dream of.
Though the Brewers have expressed a desire to retain his services, it's expected that Fielder will be playing elsewhere next season. Losing him would be a serious blow to the Brewers' offense, and it might prove to be a big problem for Braun who, for almost all of his major league career, has hit ahead of the powerful first baseman in the lineup.
The problem is, there's no way to determine just how much of an impact Fielder's presence has had on Braun's production. The sample size is miniscule. In the past three seasons, Fielder has missed just one game.
The bright side is, Braun won't have to be a one-man show. Second baseman Rickie Weeks Is coming off a breakout season and is under contract for several more years. Right fielder Corey Hart is signed long-term, too. There's also hope that third baseman Casey McGehee will return to form in 2012."I believe in the direction of this franchise and where we're headed as a group," Braun said Tuesday after being announced the MVP. Along with continuing to pace the offense, Braun will also need to step up and carry the burden of being a leader in the clubhouse. Fielder carried himself well in that role, but Braun's leadership has always been more understated, to say the least.He has been outspoken and brutally honest, even if it gets him into trouble. Take, for example, his 2009 comments that Brewers GM Doug Melvin needed to find the team some pitching help. Those comments resulted in a sitdown chat with Melvin and a public apology.
But still, the pressure falls on Braun to not only maintain his 2011 numbers but possibly impossibly? improve on them if the Brewers are to keep their standing at or near the top of the National League Central. He's the guy with the big contract. He's the guy people are paying to see and whose number is most often found displayed on the backs of fans' T-shirts. Even ownership has high expectations for Braun, evidenced by Mark Attanasio's comment last week that Braun would someday have a statue outside Miller Park, alongside those of Milwaukee greats Robin Yount and Hank Aaron.Braun has never backed down from those comparisons and openly admits that being mentioned in the similar breath as such Hall of Fame players is a goal of his.Getting to that point, though, will require much more than good sound bites and a couple of award-winning seasons. Players like Yount and Aaron delivered on an annual basis over not just years but decades. Yount won two MVP awards seven years apart, and Aaron was in the top 10 for MVP voting 13 times.
"It's a process to get there. I think I need to accomplish more to truly be in that conversation," Braun said.
To his credit, Braun has never lacked confidence. But regardless of Fielder's future, the pressure is now on the player who is signed through 2020 and, on the bright side, he's never bowed to it.
"I've always felt I put far more pressure on myself than anyone else can put on me," Braun said.
That could very well change next season.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
Thank goodness Milwaukee outfielder Ryan Braun was able to claim the National League MVP.
That's the way it is supposed to be.
Braun was No. 1 on 20 ballots and No. 2 on 12 ballots. Runner-up Matt Kemp of Los Angeles was voted No. 1 on 10 ballots, while one ballot had Braun's teammate, Prince Fielder, and one had Justin Upton of Arizona in the No. 1 slots.
There is, however...
Sure, sure, Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun took home the National League MVP Tuesday, but it was a prediction by second place finisher Matt Kemp and an obvious error by ESPN that are making the headlines.First...the prediction from the Los Angeles Dodgers slugger."I'm going to go 50-50 next year. I'm telling you, y'all created a monster. I'm about...
Can you name the last Brewer to win the NL MVP award?
The answer is no one.
That is because the Brew Crew has not had an MVP award winner since Robin Yount in 1989 when they were a member of the American League. They have their first NL MVP award winner this year in Ryan Braun.
Braun put up offensive numbers that were very balanced. He had the second highest batting average in the...
He may not have been the main star of Milwaukee Brewers last season, but Ryan Braun is the league's most valuable player. Sharing the spotlight with first baseman Prince Fielder, Braun capped off a fantastic 2011 campaign by edging out Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp for the award.
Many thought that Kemp was a lock to be the NL MVP, but Braun proved everybody wrong...
Milwaukee's Ryan Braun won the NL Most Valuable Player Award Tuesday after helping lead the Brewers to their first division title in nearly 30 years. The left fielder received 20 of 32 first-place votes and 388 points in voting announced by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.
By HOWIE RUMBERG
AP Sports WriterNEW YORK (AP) -- Milwaukee's Ryan Braun has won the NL Most Valuable Player Award after helping lead the Brewers to their first division title in nearly 30 years. Braun earned the MVP on Tuesday, receiving 20 of 32 first-place votes and 388 points in voting announced by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Los Angeles center fielder...
The BBWAAvoters really screwed up this time.
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I mean the AL MVP debate was at least passable, but everybody knew who the NL MVP for the 2011 season was going to be.
It would seem that the BBWAA’s blunders are coming from letting their wishes interpret all duties by having an open mind.
It was Los Angeles Dodger Matt Kemp, but he came in second and not a close...
Brewers slugger Ryan Braun said he could sympathize with those voters tasked with selecting the National League MVP. Should it be the player who had the best statistical season, period? Or the player who had the best season for a contending team?
HBT: Milwaukee's Ryan Braun has won the NL Most Valuable Player Award after helping lead the Brewers to their first division title in nearly 30 years. Braun earned the MVP on Tuesday, receiving 20 of 32 first-place votes and 388 points in voting announced by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Los Angeles center fielder Matt Kemp, who came close to winning the Triple...
Milwaukee Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun was named the National League Most Valuable Player Tuesday.
Milwaukee’s Ryan Braun won the NL Most Valuable Player Award on Tuesday after helping lead the Brewers to their first division title in nearly 30 years.
The left fielder received 20 of 32 first-place votes and 388 points in voting announced by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America.
NEW YORK—Milwaukee's Ryan Braun has won the NL Most Valuable Player Award after helping lead the Brewers to their first division title in nearly 30 years.
Ryan Braun of the Brewers has been named National League MVP. His season was nearly identical to Jacoby Ellbury's. If both guys had won MVP while both having 30-30 seasons, I'd find myself wondering if that had ever happened before.Bobby Valentine continues to be the Man Most Likely, and today he won the Shaughnessy Primary in a big way. (Let's see how long that lasts...
This season, both of our MVPs, Justin Verlander in the AL and Ryan Braun in the NL, were anything but unanimous. In the American League, a really interesting debate was held over the merits of a starting pitcher being voted most valuable and in the National League, Matt Kemp was arguable more deserving than Braun. What I find of equal interest though is some of the more surprising...
With the exception of a Joey Votto here or a Justin Morneau there, players from small-market baseball teams typically do not win most valuable player awards because they cannot be paid to stay long enough for MVP-type circumstances to come together as they did this season for Ryan Braun and the Milwaukee Brewers.