TORONTO -- Matt Kemp wouldn't say on Tuesday that the 2011 National League MVP Award should be given to him, but did say it should be taken from suspended Milwaukee outfielder Ryan Braun.
"Do I feel like it should be stripped? I mean, yeah, I do," Kemp said. "I feel like it should be, but that's not for me to decide, you know? That's not for me to decide."
Kemp spent the day getting treatment on his sprained left ankle -- it's still swollen and likely to put him back on the disabled list -- and answering reporters' questions about Braun, who won a controversial, and now tainted, MVP two years ago.
Kemp said he was "disappointed" with Braun, who had insisted of his innocence until Monday, when he accepted suspension without pay for the rest of this season and apologized for his "mistakes."
"You don't like getting lied to," Kemp said. "A lot of people feel the same way. I'm sure I'm but another on that list."
Kemp had defended Braun when the initial news broke of a positive test for performance-enhancing drugs, which was overturned by an arbitrator. So now that Braun has accepted a suspension for the remainder of the season, does Kemp feel he should get Braun's MVP?
"I was in the race for MVP and got second," he said. "The voters had their opinion of who they wanted to pick as MVP. You have to respect who they picked. It is what it is. For me, all I can worry about is getting healthy. It definitely would be nice to have an MVP trophy, but I didn't win the MVP. I was second."
Kemp said Major League Baseball is "doing a good job cleaning up the game." He said the accomplishments of clean players are being tarnished by those who break the rules.
"As a player who never took PEDs or steroids, it's upsetting that [those who do take banned substances] take away from those guys who bust their butts in the gym and play the game clean," he said. "We're all grown men who make our own decisions what we put in our bodies, we know what's right and what's wrong. MLB can't make people stay clean."
Kemp said suspicions that Baltimore slugger Chris Davis is succeeding for reasons other than his talent are "upsetting."
"Don't take away from somebody doing a great job," he said. "Davis always had the ability to hit home runs. Now he's just figured it out. But people are tearing him down, saying he's doing something, and that's unfair to him and the Baltimore organization."
As for the ankle, Kemp said it's a day-to-day mission. He was injured in an awkward slide at home plate in Washington on Sunday. The ankle is taped tightly when it isn't immobilized in a rigid boot. He blames himself for the injury, because he was not running hard from third to home on Carl Crawford's grounder, believing that there wouldn't be a play at the plate.
"It could be a week, it could be tomorrow it feels good again," Kemp said. "I won't know, just day to day. There's no special drink that makes the swelling go away. It takes time."
Kemp, once an ironman who played 399 consecutive games, could wind up on the DL for the third time this season if the ankle doesn't respond quickly.
"People say I'm made of glass," he said. "I played five or six years straight. I think maybe it caught up to me, but this injury was stupid. I'm definitely not made of glass. You never want to get that label. But they don't remember the 399. It's, 'Man, you hurt again?'"
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.