Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado has been an MVP-caliber player for several years now. He's finished eighth, fifth and then fourth in NL MVP voting the last three years. Here we are, on Sept. 12 with the Rockies in first place and the NL MVP race is completely wide open. Arenado is having a year similar to previous seasons, so might he sneak in with a bit of a "lifetime achievement" MVP win? The timing has never been better for him to take the award.
Coincidentally and interestingly enough, he might be undercut by a teammate.
Trevor Story became the first full-time shortstop to notch 40 doubles, 30 homers and 25 steals in a single season. Somewhat arbitrary landmarks, sure, but that's what baseball stats are all about when it comes down to it. Story is now leading the NL in doubles and total bases while playing good defense at a premium position., Rockies shortstop
Let's compare Story and Arenado to this point.
(DRS is defensive runs saved)
Close, huh? It'll be fun to see how both players perform down the stretch. The NL MVP is one of the more fun races and this is but one aspect. For those curious, here are the six position players with more baseball-reference.com WAR than the Rockies' duo:
- Lorenzo Cain, Brewers, 6.3
- Paul Goldschmidt, Diamondbacks, 5.7
- Freddie Freeman, Braves, 5.5
- Javier Baez, Cubs, 5.4
- Christian Yelich, Brewers, 5.3
- Matt Carpenter, Cardinals, 5.1
And, of course, the three stud starting pitchers (Jacob deGrom, Aaron Nola and Max Scherzer) should be involved in the discussion as well. In all, these are probably the 11 candidates for 10 BBWAA ballot spots.