Most Valuable Player - Paul Goldschmidt
Major League Baseball gives voters non-specific criteria for MVP each year. Basically, the player must perform above and beyond on both sides of the ball, play a lot of games, and be an upstanding citizen. Those vague criteria make this award particularly challenging to award in some years.
The ever-consistent Paul Goldschmidt has earned this year's team MVP award. Nolan Arenado, Willson Contreras, and Lars Nootbaar all deserve recognition as well, but Goldy's consistency on both sides of the ball paired with his leadership gives him the edge. Additionally, he has been extremely reliable, as he has played in 154 games thus far and will surpass 700 plate appearances this year. Had Contreras or Nootaar played a full season, this story may have been different. One of the few, specific guidelines and criteria for the Most Valuable Player award includes games played.
In 2023, Goldschmidt has a slash line of .268/.363/.447 for an OPS+ of 120. Goldschmidt has accumulated 3.4 bWAR, and his defensive metrics have rebounded this year. He has accumulated 3 OAA this year.
While this isn't necessarily included in voting for the MVP, Goldschmidt is also the Cardinals's nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. This is a testament to his character and demeanor both on and off the field.