ESPN: Goldschmidt in MVP log-jam, Greinke sneaky in Cy Young race

Sep 20, 2017, 4:36 PM | Updated: 10:41 pm
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It’s a complicated and muddled MVP race in the National League, and Paul Goldschmidt’s situation for the Arizona Diamondbacks isn’t making things much more clear heading down the stretch.

For one, he’s hitting .154 more than halfway through the month of September. Also not helping his MVP candidacy is the success of his own teammate, J.D. Martinez, who has belted his way into the forefront since being acquired from the Detroit Tigers.

Put on a wider lens, and the MVP race only gets more confusing when considering the field. ESPN’s Mark Simon believes there are three additional viable MVP candidates after Goldschmidt: Miami’s Giancarlo Stanton, Cincinnati’s Joey Votto and Colorado’s Nolan Arenado.

The first two of those names aren’t on teams vying for the postseason. And Arenado, playing for the Wild Card hopeful Rockies, like Goldschmidt has a teammate who is perhaps stealing some of the limelight, writes Simon.

… the two best players in the league — Stanton and Votto — are basically dead even in quality. The next-best player, Arenado, has a teammate (Charlie Blackmon) who is maybe a sliver behind him. And Goldschmidt’s outstanding season has been overshadowed by the home runs J.D. Martinez has hit since the Diamondbacks got him in trade.

Is there a favorite? Stanton might have a case as momentum builds when he reaches and surpasses the 60-home run mark this season.

In any case, Simon calls it a log-jam, and that’s a hard thing to argue.

But a strong finish to the year by Goldschmidt and the D-backs just might do enough to separate the first baseman from the pack.

Greinke in the Cy Young hunt

The Nationals’ Max Scherzer and the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw might be favorites, but Arizona’s Zack Greinke quietly finds himself right in the Cy Young Award conversation, according to Simon.

Greinke, who is tied for the MLB lead with 17 wins as of Wednesday, has a 2.87 ERA, which is a few ticks higher than those of Kershaw (2.26), Scherzer (2.59) and Washington’s Stephen Strasburg (2.60). His 1.02 WHIP is right with Scherzer (0.91), Kershaw (0.92) and Strasburg (1.03).

The pitcher sneaking up on everyone but fans of his team is Zack Greinke, whose ERA is a little higher than his competitors’ but who has given his team more high-quality innings in an environment in Arizona that is highly hitter-friendly. Greinke is atop the WAR leaderboards at both FanGraphs and

Greinke finds himself 13-1 at Chase Field with a 2.33 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP compared to a 4-5 record with a 3.61 ERA and 1.19 WHIP on the road this season.

Add it all up, however, and it’s been an award-worthy season.

Remember when the baseball world wondered whether Greinke would ever return to greatness after his 2016 struggles? Turns out he’s just fine. And he might be a couple of good starts away from a second Cy Young.

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ESPN: Goldschmidt in MVP log-jam, Greinke sneaky in Cy Young race