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MLB MVP finalists make unique bit of history

There were few surprises when Major League Baseball released the list of finalists for AL and NL MVP on Monday. The candidates did put together a historical first, though. Shohei Ohtani, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Marcus Semien were the finalists in the American League. Bryce Harper, Juan Soto, and Fernando Tatis Jr. got the nod… Read More

The post MLB MVP finalists make unique bit of history appeared first on Larry Brown Sports.

Shohei Ohtani hitting

There were few surprises when Major League Baseball released the list of finalists for AL and NL MVP on Monday. The candidates did put together a historical first, though.

Shohei Ohtani, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Marcus Semien were the finalists in the American League. Bryce Harper, Juan Soto, and Fernando Tatis Jr. got the nod in the National League. All six of them had one specific thing in common in 2021 beyond just being great: none of them actually made the playoffs. That had never happened in MLB history.

For a long time, making the playoffs has almost been considered a prerequisite for MVP candidates. Many voters like to see a great player guide his team to the playoffs instead of putting up big numbers in games that are largely meaningless. The caveat here is that Guerrero Jr.’s and Semien’s Blue Jays and Harper’s Phillies were in the playoff race right up to the end of the season, and Tatis Jr.’s Padres were still somewhat in contention in September as well.

Still, it signals a change in how voters are viewing MVP candidates. Then again, Ohtani would have been in the running no matter what — just ask his manager.

The post MLB MVP finalists make unique bit of history appeared first on Larry Brown Sports.

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