On this day last year, Justin Verlander pitched a no-hitter against the Toronto Blue Jays, running his record to 3-3 and lowering his ERA to 3.16 in the process.
As exciting as that moment was, nobody could have predicted that it was going to launch Verlander on a path toward the American League MVP. That goes to show just how long the MLB season really is, and how much can happen between the start and finish.
So, trying to draw a clear picture of the AL MVP race right now is a little silly, as the odds are good that a player who is nowhere near being in the MVP race is going to come away with the award when all is said and done. Baseball is the most unpredictable sport on earth.
What we can do from now until the end of the season is take stock of the MVP race at the moment. And at this moment, here are the top five contenders for the AL MVP award.