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With his red-hot plate appearances in July, first baseman can put his name in the NL MVP race and carry the Braves into October.
This time of season in baseball features playoff races and trade deadline rumors heating up at a fast pace. Among those catching fire in the second-half push has been Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman. The reigning NL Most Valuable Player is looking to carry his team back in the postseason hunt, and it’s possible he could become a back-to-back MVP if he continues posting these types of numbers.
In 16 games during July, Freeman owns a .417 batting average and a 1.217 OPS with five home runs and 11 RBIs. Despite a less-than MVP-like months of April and May, Freeman has raised his slash line to .288/.391/.516 with 22 home runs and 55 RBIs in a major-league leading 414 plate appearances this season.
Braves: Freddie Freeman is playing himself into another MVP award and a big contract
He’s tied for fourth in the NL in home runs, 14th in RBIs, third in walks (59), eighth in batting average, fourth in on-base percentage, and sixth in OPS (.910).
If the season ended today, the player most-likely to take home NL MVP honors is Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. Aside from continuing his run as one of the game’s most exciting players, Tatis has backed up his hype by leading all NL hitters in home runs (29), slugging percentage (.643), OPS (1.014), and stolen bases (23) this season.
Another NL player having a dominant season and should be in the MVP talks is Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom. However, deGrom recently landed on the 10-day IL with a right forearm strain. His 1.08 ERA and 0.554 WHIP are as elite as it gets, but depending on how many starts he misses it could affect the voters decisions at the end of the year.
Aside from another MVP award to put on his mantle, Freeman is also playing for a new contract after this season. If the soon-to-be free agent keeps this up, he’s going to see a big payday from Atlanta or elsewhere.