This year’s battle for NL MVP honors features some of the league’s brightest young stars and established veterans in the prime of their careers.
Let’s look at the current NL MVP futures courtesy of the BetMGM Sportsbook.
Paul Goldschmidt – Cardinals (-154)
Last Week: Goldschmidt continues to be on an absolute tear, launching two home runs and driving in all three St. Louis runs, albeit in a losing effort, as the Cardinals dropped a 6-3 decision to the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday at Great American Ballpark. Sunday marked the fourth consecutive game that the Cardinals’ first baseman has homered (the fifth if one wishes to include the All-Star Game). Over the three-game series with the Reds, Goldschmidt was 6-for-13 (.462) with four home runs and seven RBI. His 333/.416/.603 line tops the NL in all three categories. The 34-year-old also tops the league in runs scored (68), and his 24 home runs and 77 RBIs are good for third and second place, respectively.
This Week: St. Louis travels to Toronto to take on the Blue Jays in a critical two-game interleague series for both teams beginning on Tuesday. However, Goldschmidt and teammate Nolan Arenado, both of whom are unvaccinated, are two of the three players who will not be permitted to play in Toronto, given the Government of Canada’s vaccine mandate. The two sluggers will no doubt be back in the lineup when the Cardinals travel to Washington for a three-game series with the struggling Nationals.
Freddie Freeman – Dodgers (+650)
Last Week: The Dodgers’ first baseman continued his torrid hitting, starting the second half 6-for-14 (.428) with two home runs and three RBI over a four-game series with the San Francisco Giants. Freeman now owns a 12-game hitting streak, which has seen the former Brave hit .522 (24 for 46) with five home runs and 12 RBI. Freeman’s .324/.402/.503 slash line has him sitting second in AVG and OBP and fourth in SLG among qualified hitters.
This Week: The Dodgers offense could be in for a productive week, hosting the lowly Washington Nationals in a three-game set before heading to Coors Field, the launching pad the Colorado Rockies call home.
Manny Machado – Padres (+750)
Last Week: Machado went 3-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI in a losing effort as the Padres dropped the finale of their three-game series with the New York Mets 8-5 at Citi Field Sunday night. Saturday, the Padres’ third baseman launched a two-run home run in the sixth inning, which ultimately proved to be the game-winner, as San Diego edged the Mets 2-1.
This Week: After missing nine games with an ankle injury, Machado has struggled since returning to the lineup on June 30, hitting just .216 with four home runs and eight RBI. His performance over the weekend was encouraging, as the Padres find themselves in the thick of the NL Wild Card race. San Diego wraps up its six-game road trip in Detroit with three against the Tigers before heading home to open a seven-game homestand on Friday, starting with the Minnesota Twins.
Mookie Betts – Dodgers (+1000)
Last Week: Betts has exploded from the blocks to start the second half, going 6-for-17 (.353) with two home runs in the four-game set against the Giants. The former Red Sox star is second in the NL in runs scored and fifth in both home runs (22) and SLG (.544).
This Week: The Dodgers’ right fielder will roll out the welcome mat as the Washington Nationals visit Dodger Stadium. Betts wreaked havoc with the Nationals pitching earlier this season, going 5-for-8 with two home runs and six RBI.
Pete Alonso – Mets (+1000)
Last Week: Alonso cracked a three-run homer, his 25th of the season off Padres starter Joe Musgrove (8-3), leading the Mets to an 8-5 victory Sunday night. The first baseman added to his league-leading RBI total, his four RBI on the night giving him 82 for the season. Alonso went 6-for-10 in the three-game set, raising his average to .274.
This Week: The Mets are off Monday and then renew acquaintances with the Yankees in a brief two-game Subway Series at Citi Field. It’s then off to Miami, where the Mets tangle with the Marlins for three at LoanDepot Park. Alonso is just 8-for-45 (.195) against Marlins pitching this season, but four of those hits have been home runs.