Somehow, Freddie Freeman Has Made The National League MVP A Tight Race

I'm going to give you the 2023 stats of two players and I want you to make a determination on which one should win the National League MVP award this season.

Player A: .328/.407/.571, .978 OPS, 23 HR, 58 RBI, 161 wRC+, 5.1 fWAR

Player B: .328/.410/.584, .994 OPS, 21 HR, 71 RBI, 167 wRC+, 5.0 fWAR

Obviously both of these are outstanding players, but looking at those numbers, I'd probably give the edge to Player B. That player is Freddie Freeman.

As you may have guessed, Player A is Ronald Acuña Jr., who is still the presumptive favorite to win his first MVP this season and has a chance to be the first player to ever hit 40 home runs and steal 50 bases — he'll have the steals by this weekend, only the homers remain in doubt. And while the stolen bases certainly add another lethal element to Acuña's game, Freeman has quietly snuck up and arguably passed what Acuña has done with the bat this season.


If Ronald ends up joining the 40-40 club — and 40-50, 40-60, 40-70... — he has to win the award. But through 99 games, Acuña is on pace for 37 home runs. And while being the first player to hit 37 homers and steal whatever ungodly amount of bases he finishes with would be a great accomplishment, I don't think it carries the same weight in voters' minds as making it to 40. Meanwhile, Freeman may very well end up hitting .340 with 120 RBI. At that point, I think there would be plenty of people who would give the nod to Freeman over his former teammate.

I hope Acuña goes on another tear and finishes with 43 home runs and 80 stolen bases en route to an MVP and another World Series ring. But if he falls off even a little bit, Freeman looks like a great value bet right now.