"I feel good," Braun said. "Swing is in a good place, bat path is in a good place. But more than that, I'm healthy; healthiest I've been in a while."
Braun found a solution last season for a nerve issue in his right hand, which had sapped his power, but he played the final weeks with a bad back. He underwent surgery last October for a bulging disc, and so far in 2016, he has not missed any games because of injury. Braun has taken only one game off.
"He's locked in, there's no question," manager Craig Counsell said. "At the end of Spring Training, he homered in his last three games before the season started, so it was in there in the spring. You know, he's a good hitter. He's had good at-bats. He's crushed the mistakes that guys have made to him. He's done a good job."
There were no surprises on the ballot in terms of Brewers names. Former All-Stars Jonathan Lucroy (catcher) and Aaron Hill (third base) were eligible, with first baseman Chris Carter, second baseman Scooter Gennett, shortstop Jonathan Villar and outfielders Domingo Santana and Ramon Flores.
Browsing the ballot
The other side: In the American League, the most fascinating race might be at third base, where reigning AL MVP Josh Donaldson of the Blue Jays and Manny Machado of the Orioles own some of the big leagues' most gaudy early-season numbers. But Brewers fans with rebuilding on their brain might have a soft spot for the Royals' Mike Moustakas, an improved player who benefited from Kansas City's patience over recent years. He entered Sunday fifth in the AL in total bases and tied for fourth with 11 extra-base hits.
Tip of the cap: Sure, his numbers may be partially Coors Field-fueled, but considering the way he plays defense, it is difficult to overlook the Rockies' Nolan Arenado in the NL race at third base. Arenado's 17 RBIs as of Sunday morning trailed only the Nationals' Bryce Harper, and his seven home runs trailed only Harper and teammate Trevor Story.
A rising star: The puns were well-earned by Story, the 23-year-old rookie with a chance to make the NL All-Star team at shortstop. His early-season home run binge put Story on the national radar, and he entered Sunday sixth in the league in OPS.
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