With the rise of the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL wild-card standings, the NL MVP race may no longer be a two-man competition between Andrew McCutchen and Buster Posey.
Ryan Braun's numbers this season absolutely deserve MVP consideration regardless of how his team is performing. But going by last season's results, in which Braun beat out the Los Angeles Dodgers' Matt Kemp for the award, team success is obviously a factor in the voting.
While there's no change among the players listed in this week's rankings, we did try to give mention to other players that might be deserving of consideration, such as the Cincinnati Reds' Jay Bruce, Miami Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton and especially the San Diego Padres' Chase Headley. One or more of those players could break into our top five before the end of the season.
With that said, here are the five leading contenders for the NL MVP award in our view. All the statistics mentioned here are current as of Sept. 12.
If you have any responses or suggestions for these rankings, please share them in the comments. You can also reply to me on Twitter, My address is at the end of this article. That feedback very often influences how this list is assembled each week.