PHOENIX — File this under it takes one to know one.
With two of the top National League MVP candidates in Arizona for a weekend series, Miami Marlins manager Don Mattingly weighed in Friday on what he considers the most relevant criteria for choosing the winner. He made it sound pretty basic.
“Just the guy who is putting up the numbers,” said Mattingly, the 1985 American League MVP with 35 homers and 145 RBIs for the Yankees.
“At the end of the day, that is what we really look at. The guy that is driving in runs, getting on base, doing kind of everything offensively. It is more of an offensive award. It is nice when you have balance with it.”
Diamondbacks first baseman Paul Goldschmidt and Miami right fielder Giancarlo Stanton are perhaps the top candidates in a crowded NL MVP field that includes Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado, Colorado center fielder Charlie Blackmon, Cincinnati first baseman Joey Votto and Marlins darkhorse candidate Marcell Ozuna.
Goldschmidt looked more the part Friday, with two hits, two walks and three runs scored as the Diamondbacks (89-65) dropped their magic number to clinch a playoff spot to two. Stanton was 0-for-4 with a sacrifice fly that gave him 121 RBIs, second in the NL and tied with Preston Wilson for the most in franchise history.
Arizona right-hander Taijuan…