Zack Greinke MVP talk is starting to take hold. With the Cy Young race between Greinke and Clayton Kershaw, it seems like the LA Dodgers might also have a pitcher win the National League MVP for the second straight year as well. A report from ESPN points out that supporters of Kershaw are still siding with him because Kershaw is the better overall pitcher. The award is supposed to just be for the 2015 MLB season (this year).
So what are the odds that the voters will give the MVP award to a pitcher again? Examining the numbers Greinke has put up becomes very important. He has a 1.59 ERA, 0.846 WHIP, and an ERA+ of 234. Greinke also has a 15-3 record and allows just 6.1 hits per nine innings. Last season, Clayton Kershaw had a 1.77 ERA, 0.857 WHIP, and an ERA+ of 199. Kershaw finished 21-3 and won both the NL Cy Young and MVP.
In the argument for a Zack Greinke MVP award, he is posting better numbers in the 2015 MLB season than the NL MVP did during the 2014 MLB season. That's pretty amazing, but even more so that the two starting pitchers are in the same rotation. It is an embarrassment of riches for the LA Dodgers, and anything short of a World Series title would make this season a huge disappointment. For the individual awards, though, can Greinke overcome the stigma that some fans place upon pitchers winning MVP awards?
The other players in the running for the 2015 NL MVP Award are Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals, Andrew McCutchen of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Paul Goldschmidt of the Arizona Diamondbacks, and Buster Posey of the San Francisco Giants. Harper has 33 homers, 82 RBIs, and a .336 batting average. Goldschmidt is at 27, 97, and .324, with Posey at 16, 80, and .325, and McCutchen at 20, 85, and .304. It's worth mentioning that Joey Votto of the Cincinnati Reds is at 27, 70, and .317, with a league-leading 118 walks as well.
That's a number of worthy candidates, but only one (McCutchen) comes from a team heading to the postseason. The voters will have to decide if teams not in contention should have played getting MVP votes when the numbers aren't far above the other candidates. In a pretty even field of candidates, it should not be surprising to anyone if LA Dodgers ace Zack Greinke wins the 2015 NL MVP Award. He certainly has the numbers that any voter could defend, but will he finish the season strong?
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