Each week, a new contender for National League Most Valuable Player seemingly emerges to make the race for the award that much more interesting.
Last week, powered by 11 homers, 22 RBI and an 1.100 OPS in July, the Arizona Diamondbacks' Jason Kubel hit his way into the MVP discussion. His output has helped the D-Backs surge to within 2.5 games of the NL West lead.
Yet Kubel falls out of our rankings this week. How did that happen? Well, somebody else has been playing even better. Matt Holliday should arguably have been on this list at least a week or two ago. An impressive five-game stretch has boosted his candidacy, even surpassing teammate Carlos Beltran for MVP consideration.
Not on the list for the second straight week—though his numbers warrant a place in the top five—is Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto. Not only hasn't he played since July 15, but the Reds have won 13 of 16 games without him. Once Votto comes back, however, he'll surely return to this list.
That leaves the following five players as the leading contenders for the NL MVP award. Please leave your responses and suggestions in the comments. They're definitely considered when putting this list together each week, as shown by Holliday's entrance into our rankings.