St. Louis Cardinals star Nolan Arenado believes Paul Goldschmidt deserves the National League MVP Award this season.
"He's the best player in the game," Arenado said Friday night.
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Arenado has strong feelings about just how good Goldschmidt is: "He's the best player in the game. That's just what it is, and I stand by that comment with a lot of confidence."<br><br>Brought to you by your Mid-America Chevy Dealers. <a href="https://t.co/4ESrl0L9ks">https://t.co/4ESrl0L9ks</a> <a href="https://t.co/fsqINqB50g">pic.twitter.com/fsqINqB50g</a>
He added, "It's not even close," per Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
Goldschmidt entered Saturday with a .339 batting average, .421 on-base percentage and 1.056 OPS, leading the majors in each category. He also has 30 home runs and 96 RBI.
Only New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge has a better wins above replacement mark among position players, per Baseball Reference.
The 34-year-old already had six All-Star selections, four Gold Glove Awards and four Silver Slugger Awards heading into this season, which is shaping up to the best campaign of his 12-year career.
It could be enough for the veteran to win his first MVP after he finished in the top three three times while he was with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The slugger finished sixth a year ago, but his numbers are better nearly across the board in 2022. He had 31 home runs, 99 RBI, a .294 batting average, an .879 OPS and 12 steals last season.
Perhaps more importantly, the Cardinals are in first place in the National League Central after finishing second in each of the last two years, having built a four-game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers with five straight wins.
Arenado (.923 OPS, 25 HR, 77 RBI) has also been a key part of St. Louis' success this season, but there is a clear top dog in the clubhouse this year.