NL Batting Title Update: Andrew McCutchen Takes Four Point Lead Over Buster Posey

By Troy Pfaff

Pittsburgh Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen strengthened his grip on the 2012 National League Batting Title race with a two-for-five performance yesterday against the Houston Astros. He’s now batting .336 on the year, four points better than San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey‘s .332 average. Posey grounded into an out in his pinch hit appearance yesterday.

McCutchen and the Pirates head to New York to take on the Mets for a four-game series this week before two three-game home series against the Cincinnati Reds and Atlanta Braves close out the season.

Posey’s Giants are off Monday, then have three-game series against the Arizona DiamondbacksSan Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers.

The two players are also in a tight contest for the NL MVP. While McCutchen has posted better numbers literally across the board than Posey, the Pirates’ recent collapse will surely hurt McCutchen’s MVP hopes. As absurd as that logic sounds, MLB writers tend to vote for a player on a better team rather than a superior player on a worse team. 

Ryan Braun being awarded last season’s NL MVP over the clearly superior Matt Kemp is the perfect example.

Of course, that’s not the point of this post. That’s all a different argument for a different day. Each of Posey, McCutchen and Braun have been deserving of this season’s award, and the season isn’t over yet.

While the Pirates have essentially been eliminated from playoff contention – they’re 6.5 games back – the Brewers are 2.5 games out of the second wild card spot. Should the Brewers miss the playoffs as well, MLB MVP “logic” would state the award is Posey’s to lose.

Even if he is the third-most valuable player of the three.

Follow Troy on Twitter @TroyPfaff for more Pittsburgh Pirates content

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