Braun finishes second in NL MVP race
Click over to Brewers.com and MLB.com for our full coverage, but for now here’s the lede: Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun finished second in NL MVP balloting, as voted by the Baseball Writers Association of America.
Giants catcher Buster Posey won the award with 422 total points and 27 first-place votes. Braun was a distant second with 285 points and three first-place votes, appearing on all 32 ballots and finishing no lower than fourth. That means no voters punished Braun for last winter’s events by completely omitting him from the MVP ballot.
The Pirates’ Andrew McCutchen finished third, followed by the Cardinals’ Yadier Molina and the Padres’ Chase Headley.
Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez finished ninth in the MVP race with 47 points.
Here’s some of what Braun had to say:
Is this how he thought it would go down?
“To be honest with you, I didn’t really think much about it at all. I didn’t think that I was going to win,” Braun said. “It’s exciting to know that I was a finalist and that I had another season that put me in that MVP conversation. That’s something I’m proud of. But aside from that, I didn’t think about it at all.
“I think Buster Posey deserved to win. What he was able to accomplish this year as a catcher, with a team that went on to win the World Series was incredible. I thought he was the best player. I think he deserved to be the MVP. …
“I think I had a good season. I don’t think that I had a great season. I don’t think my season was far and away better than anybody else’s to the point where I feel like I deserved an award that I didn’t get.”
On whether last winter’s events played into this year’s awards balloting:
“I never think about those things,” Braun said. “I’m not oblivious to what’s going on or what’s been said, but aside from that I don’t spend any time thinking about those things. I really don’t.”
On the impact of Brewers missing the postseason:
“The best players on teams that make it to the postseason deserve extra credit because that’s what everybody’s top priority is,” Braun said. “That’s what everybody works for all year. He should have been given credit for it. We gave it a good effort, but we fell short.”
On Miguel Cabrera winning AL MVP honors:
“I thought Miguel Cabrera deserved the award,” Braun said. “I really did. I think historically, the guys that help their teams get to the postseason deserve extra credit. Cabrera was the best player down the stretch, had an incredibly strong finish to his season, helped his team get to the playoffs. He won the Triple Crown, which is unbelievable. Mike Trout obviously had a phenomenal year as well, but I thought Miguel Cabrera was deserving.”
And, of course, on the news that he’s engaged to his girlfriend, model Larisa Fraser:
“I don’t comment on anything going on in my private life, but if that were to be true, I would be a very lucky man.”
Follow me on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy