8 Reasons Ronald Acuna Jr. Should Still Win NL MVP Over Mookie Betts

We break down the stats from all angles and explain why we think Ronald Acuna Jr. is still the National League MVP over Mookie Betts.

Atlanta Braves v Colorado Rockies
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New York Mets v Atlanta Braves
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National League MVP Race: Acuna vs. Betts - Defense

Fangraphs has a fielding runs saved metric that removes positional adjustments from the equation. Read more about how some of these defensive metrics work here. Essentially, we are accustomed to seeing a defensive run saved number that compares the player to other players at their position. This Def rating at Fangraphs removes the positional adjustments from the equation and shows how many fielding runs saved the player is worth, above or below the league average. Mookie is at -0.4 and Acuna is at -9.9.

In terms of defensive runs saved, Acuna has been worth zero runs saved over the average right fielder on the season while Mookie has been worth three runs saved above average in RF despite playing in just 638.2 innings at the position. He has also logged six defensive runs saved in just 350 innings at second base.

In addition to posting better numbers on defense, his flexibility to play RF or 2B has given the Dodgers flexibility with their lineups. We saw it in game one of the series when Betts started at second, allowing the Dodgers to get the three lefty OF bats in the lineup against Strider.

Here you can read more on Acuna's defensive struggles and why his metrics aren't as good as we'd like.

Advantage: Betts