I argued a few weeks ago that Joey Votto is the most important player to his team than any other player is to his team in the National League. The Cincinnati Reds would not be anywhere near first place, much less 10 games over .500 without Joey Votto at first base every game. No one could argue otherwise. I still firmly believe he is the most important person to his team.
I am going to take it a step further now. That’s right. As of today, Joey Votto is the most valuable player in the National League. Let me quantify and qualify my pronouncement.
Joey Votto leads the National League in six very important categories at the plate. He has a batting average of .368 and rising. In the month of May, Votto batted .355. For the month of June, he has upped it to a mind blowing .492. There is no one seeing or hitting as well as he is right now. No one.
Votto is first in doubles with 29. That tells me that he is driving the ball when he makes contact.
Joey Votto is showing great patience at the plate. He leads the league handily with 55 base-on-balls. Consequently, Votto is also leading the league in on base percentage at .491. He is on base half of the time he appears at the plate. That is remarkable.
To top off the number one rankings for Votto, he leads also in slugging at .667 and on base + slugging at 1.158.
Consider other stats. He is 4th in hits with 84; 7th in homeruns with 13; 6th in RBI with 45 and has a fielding percentage of .997 having only committed 2 errors all year.
Joey Votto is the guy who fouled out 1 time all last year and has yet to pop out to an infielder this year. In late innings, his batting average goes up. He also leads the league in hitting with runners in scoring position.
Joey Votto is, without a doubt, the best player in the National League and should be considered the absolute front runner (shoe in, if you will) for the 2012 NL MVP.