The one thing that could cost Matt Kemp the National League MVP award was an injury. Well, here we are.
Kemp went on the disabled list this week with a strained left hamstring. The injury was obviously restricting him, as the MVP favorite suffered through an 0-for-13 slump in his past four games before going on the DL.
Should the injury and the slump it caused affect Kemp's MVP standing? Well, you'll have to click ahead to find out for sure. But if it's generally understood that a player shouldn't lose his job to injury, should he be considered less accomplished if he's hurt?
One guy who did get knocked off our list of NL MVP candidates is St. Louis Cardinals third baseman David Freese. He's hitless in his last 15 at-bats, moving his OPS down to .815. That's the eighth-highest total on his own team.
Maybe it's not a coincidence that the Cards have been losing while Freese has been slumping. And perhaps that should help his case for MVP consideration. That's something we'll think about over the next week, along with your comments on the matter.
In the meantime, here are this week's five top candidates for NL MVP.