Giancarlo Stanton edged out Joey Votto in the fourth-closest balloting of all-time to become the first Miami Marlins' player to be named National League MVP, the Baseball Writers' Association of American announced on Thursday.

Stanton received 302 votes, two more than Cincinnati Reds star Joey Votto. Both players received 10 first-place votes.

Arizona Diamondbacks slugger Paul Goldschmidt was third (229) and received four first-place votes.

"This is unbelievable," Stanton said after the announcement on the Major League Baseball Network. "The ups and downs of my career and everything that's happened, I'm just so thankful and appreciative to everyone around me, everyone who has pushed me, everyone that's been by my side."

Stanton led the majors in homers (59) and RBIs (132) while batting .281 and slugging .631.

"We want to congratulate Giancarlo on winning the National League MVP Award," Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said in a statement. "It is fitting that his incredible season culminates with this well-deserved honor."

Votto batted .320 with 36 homers and 100 RBIs and led the National League with 134 walks and a .454 on-base percentage. Goldschmidt batted .297 with 36 homers and 120 RBIs and made the All-Star team for the fifth straight time.

Colorado standout Nolan Arenado (229, two first-place votes) finished fourth and teammate Charlie Blackmon (205, three) was fifth. Washington's Anthony Rendon (141) was sixth and Chicago's Kris Bryant (132, one) was seventh. Bryant was last season's winner.

The two-point margin was the third closest in NL history. In 1979, the award was shared by Keith Hernandez of the St. Louis Cardinals and Willie Stargell of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

There was a one-point margin 1944 when St. Louis shortstop Marty Marion edged Cubs outfielder Bill Nicholson.

Stanton wins the award at a time in which his future with the Marlins is uncertain. The new ownership that includes Derek Jeter is looking to trim salary.

"It seems pretty open right now," Stanton said. "It just depends which way we want to go. I've always said we have a great core and I think our lineup can match up with anyone's. So we need a couple pieces on the pitching side but if we're not going to do that, we might have to go a different direction. We're going to have to wait and see."

Votto came close to being a two-time winner. He won the award in 2010.