Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant has been named the 2016 National League Most Valuable Player by the Baseball Writers Association of America. He is the first member of the Cubs to win the award since Sammy Sosa in 1998.
Bryant, 24, had an outstanding follow up to his 2015 campaign for which he won the NL Rookie of the Year Award. This past season, he hit .292/.385/.554 with 39 home runs and 102 RBI while leading the league with 121 runs scored across 699 plate appearances.
Though the balloting for awards was done prior to the start of the postseason, it’s worth noting how productive Bryant was in helping the Cubs win their first World Series since 1908. During the playoffs, he hit .308/.400/.523 with five doubles, nine walks, three home runs, eight RBI, 11 runs scored in 75 plate appearances.
Bryant received 29 of 30 first-place votes. Nationals second baseman Daniel Murphy finished second in balloting — and got the only other first-place vote — followed by Dodgers rookie shortstop Corey Seager. Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo was fourth and Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado was fifth.