Originally written on Taking Bad Schotz  |  Last updated 10/20/11

With the World Series underway, it’s time to look back at the season and decide who will be crowned with the Most Valuable Player Award. Lets take a look at the top 4 candidates.

Matt Kemp: Despite playing for a non-playoff team, Kemp had one of the best statistical season in baseball history. He led the National League in homeruns with 39 and RBIs with 126. He finished 3rd in batting average, finishing the season at .324. Kemp was just a few hits away from winning the triple crown, something that hasn’t been done since 1967. These stats are even more impressive because he plays for the Dodgers, meaning hardly anyone gets on base and his protection consisted of a cast of mediocre players like Juan Rivera, Rod Barajas, and Aaron Miles. Kemp also had 40 stolen bases, the 2nd highest total in the National League.

Prince Fielder: The big vegetarian had a huge season for the Brewers, hitting 38 homeruns and knocking in 120 RBIs. He also hit .299, a very impressive mark for a man with as much power as him. Fielder is a big reason why the Brew Crew captured the NL Central title, and if he decides to resign in Milwaukee, the Brewers will continue to be a force to be reckoned with. Either way, Prince will be signing a fat contract this offseason.

Ryan Braun: Braun proved he was worth the $145.5 million ten-year contract as he hit 33 homeruns and had 111 RBIs. Braun finished second in the MLB batting title with .332 average, and may have very well won it if Jose Reyes didn’t pull himself out of the last game after going 1 for 1. The Hebrew Hammer is a fan favorite in Milwaukee, and his combination of power, contact, and fielding make him one of the best young players in the league today.

Joey Votto: The reigning NL MVP had a nice follow up campaign, hitting 29 homeruns and knocking in 103 RBIs. Unfortunately, his Cincinnati Reds did not have the same success they had in 2010 and finished 4 game sunder 500. Despite the Reds’ struggles, Votto caused a lot of opposing pitchers to lose sleep as he had a .416 on base percentage and hit several walk offs.

The Winner:

Matt Kemp: A lot of critics will say that he can’t win MVP because he struck out too much and didn’t play for a playoff team. However, the only reason he struck out so much was because he had to swing at every pitch, because if he didn’t there was a good chance the Dodgers weren’t going to score. As far as the Dodgers not making the playoffs, it is called the Most Valuable Player Award, not the best player on the best team award. If the Dodgers didn’t have Kemp, they would have been the worst team in baseball. He hit 33% of their homeruns, 21% of their RBIs, and 32% of their stolen bases.



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