Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers and Buster Posey of the World Series winning San Francisco Giants were among Major League Baseball’s Silver Slugger winners as top offensive players on Thursday.
Third baseman Cabrera, who led the American League in home runs (44), runs batted in (139) and batting average (.330) for the major league’s first Triple Crown winner in 45 years, was a sure thing in the awards made by position in each league in a vote by managers and coaches.
Posey, who led the National League in batting average with a .336 mark to go along with 24 home runs and 103 runs batted in, won his first Silver Slugger as the league’s top offensive player at the catcher position.
Besides Posey, there were 10 other first-time winners, among them six in the National League including Padres third baseman Chase Headley, Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen and Reds right-fielder Jay Bruce.
The Washington Nationals led all of baseball with three Silver Slugger winners — first baseman Adam LaRoche, shortstop Ian Desmond and pitcher Stephen Strasburg, all of whom were first-timers.
Angels’ rookie outfielder Mike Trout, Cabrera’s primary competition for MVP honors after leading the majors with 129 runs and 49 stolen bases, while also hitting .326 with 30 homers, was named a Silver Slugger winner in his first season.
Other first-time winners in the American League included White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski, Twins outfielder Josh Willingham and Kansas City’s Billy Butler, who earned designated hitter honors for hitting .313 with 29 home runs and 107 RBIs.
Silver Slugger winners:
American League Catcher: A.J. Pierzynski; First base: Prince Fielder; Second base: Robinson Cano; Third base: Miguel Cabrera; Shortstop: Derek Jeter; Outfield: Mike Trout; Outfield: Josh Willingham; Outfield: Josh Hamilton; Designated hitter: Billy Butler
National League Catcher: Buster Posey; First base: Adam LaRoche; Second base: Aaron Hill; Third base: Chase Headley; Shortstop: Ian Desmond; Outfield: Andrew McCutchen; Outfield: Jay Bruce; Outfield: Ryan Braun; Pitcher: Stephen Strasburg