Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Braun Wins NL MVP!!!

Let it sink in. Ryan Braun is your 2011 NL MVP.

Braun received 20 of 32 first-place votes from the Baseball Writers' Association of America. He had 388 total points. The runner-up, Matt Kemp, received 10 first-place votes and had 332 total points. Braun's teammate, Prince Fielder (229 total points), finished third in the MVP vote followed by Justin Upton (214 total points) and Albert Pujols (166 total points).

Braun was instrumental in leading the Brew Crew to their 1st division title since 1982 and is the 1st Brewer to win the award since Robin Yount won his 2nd AL MVP in 1989. More importantly, Braun is the 1st JML to win the MVP since Sandy Koufax in 1963. Braun joins Koufax, Al Rosen (1953), and Hank Greenberg (1935 and 1940) as the only JMLs to ever win an MVP. Lou Boudreau also won the award in 1948, if you consider him a JML.

Like this year's AL MVP, Justin Verlander, Braun also won Rookie of the Year in 2007; Verlander won that award in 2006. Braun is the only JML to ever win Rookie of the Year and an MVP. Braun has placed in the voting every year of his career. He finished 24th his rookie season, 11th in 2009, 15th in 2010, and 3rd in 2008 when the Brewers won the Wild Card.

I'll go over Braun's numbers in a forthcoming post covering the 2011 season for every JML. That will be posted soon. I wanted to wait until after the MVP voting had concluded.

It should be noted that Ian Kinsler finished 11th in the AL MVP vote, the highest he's ever placed. He had previously finished 20th in 2008 and 26th in 2009. Kinsler had 25 total points, including 1 fifth-place vote and 2 sixth-place votes. His teammate, Michael Young, finished 8th in the vote.

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