How The Top NL MVP Finishers Were Acquired

Just one of the top ten finishers in this year’s NL MVP balloting joined his team via the free agent market. Eight were drafted by their 2011 teams and one was acquired in a blockbuster trade. Here's a look at how teams around the National League originally acquired the top ten finishers in the 2011 NL MVP voting (some have since signed extensions):

  • Ryan Braun – Draft – The Brewers selected Braun fifth overall in the 2005 draft and extended him on a five-year, $105MM deal this year.
  • Matt Kemp – Draft- Dodgers scouting director Logan White selected Kemp in the sixth round of the 2003 draft. The Dodgers recently locked him up to an eight-year, $160MM extension. 
  • Prince Fielder – Draft – Fielder is a Jack Zduriencik selection, like Braun. The seventh overall selection (2002) already has three top-five finishes in the MVP voting.
  • Justin Upton – Draft – Upton, the first overall selection in 2005, reached the Major Leagues as a teenager and put together his best season yet in 2011. 
  • Albert Pujols – Draft – The Cardinals selected Pujols, a three-time MVP, in the 13th round of the 1999 draft. He has ten top-ten finishes in MVP balloting after 11 MLB seasons. Pujols and Fielder are the only two current free agents on this list.
  • Joey Votto – Draft – The Reds selected last year's MVP in the second round of the 2002 draft.
  • Lance Berkman – Free Agency – Berkman, the lone player on this list to join his current team via free agency, signed a one-year, $8MM deal with the Cardinals before the season and has since signed an extension that will keep him in St. Louis through 2012.
  • Troy Tulowitzki – Draft – The Rockies selected Tulowitzki with the seventh overall selection in 2005 and he has blossomed into one of baseball's top shortstops.
  • Roy Halladay – Trade - The Phillies obtained Halladay for Travis d'Arnaud, Kyle Drabek and Michael Taylor in December, 2009 before signing him to an extension.
  • Ryan Howard – Draft – Howard, a fifth round selection in 2001, won the NL MVP in 2006 and has finished in the top ten for the award in every season since.
  • Here's a look at how American League teams acquired this year's top vote getters.

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