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          First-time honors for seven of 18; Rodriguez ties for third-most all-time

The Silver Slugger AwardLOUISVILLE , Ky. – New winners are the story in the National League while repeat performers dot the American League recipients of this year’s Louisville Slugger® Silver Slugger™ Awards. Seven winners, including five in the National League, are first time honorees. Alex Rodriguez’s selection gives him nine Silver Slugger trophies and is tied for third all-time with Barry Larkin and Manny Ramirez, one of the notables not on this year’s list.

Louisville Slugger’s Silver Slugger award winners were determined by a vote of Major League Baseball® coaches and managers who vote for the players they felt were the best offensive producers at each position in both the American and National Leagues in 2007.  Selections were based on a combination of offensive statistics including batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage, as well as the coaches’ and managers’ general impressions of a player’s overall offensive value.  Managers and coaches were not allowed to vote for players on their own team.

Rodriguez tops a list of three New York Yankees on the list. Derek Jeter wins his second straight Silver Slugger at shortstop while Jorge Posada earns his fifth award, but first since 2003. David Ortiz of the World Champion Boston Red Sox is the Silver Slugger winner at designated hitter for the fourth straight season. Vladimir Guerrero of the Angels has also won four straight awards for seven Silver Sluggers overall.

Carlos Pena becomes the first Tampa Bay Devil Ray to earn a Silver Slugger Award, capturing the AL first baseman trophy. The other first-time winner in the American League is Tigers’ second baseman Placido Polanco. Detroit’s Magglio Ordonez and Seattle’s Ichiro Suzuki join Guerrero in the outfield. Ordonez won two Silver Sluggers while with the Chicago White Sox and was chosen one of the AL’s top three offensive outfielders for the first time in five years. Suzuki, surprisingly, hasn’t won the award since his rookie season of 2001.

2007 Silver Slugger Winners

American League

1B  – Carlos Pena, Tampa Bay Devil Rays
2B  – Placido Polanco, Detroit Tigers
3B  – Alex Rodriguez, New York Yankees
SS  – Derek Jeter, New York Yankees
OF – Magglio Ordonez, Detroit Tigers
OF – Vladimir Guerrero, Los Angeles Angels
OF – Ichiro Suzuki, Seattle Mariners
C   – Jorge Posada, New York Yankees
DH – David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox

National League

1B  – Prince Fielder, Milwaukee Brewers
2B  – Chase Utley, Philadelphia Phillies
3B  – David Wright, New York Mets
SS  – Jimmy Rollins, Philadelphia Phillies
OF – Carlos Beltran, New York Mets
OF – Carlos Lee, Houston Astros
OF – Matt Holliday, Colorado Rockies
C   – Russell Martin, Los Angeles Dodgers
P   –  Micah Owings, Arizona Diamondbacks

In the NL, no player has more than two Silver Slugger Awards to their name. Outfielders Matt Holliday (Colorado Rockies) and Carlos Beltran (New York Mets) and Phillies second baseman Chase Utley are all repeat performers from 2006. Carlos Lee joins Holliday and Beltran in the outfield. The Houston Astros slugger won his previous award in 2005 with the Milwaukee Brewers. The other five winners in the senior circuit are new Silver Slugger honorees.

Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder captured his first. His father, Cecil, had two with the Detroit Tigers (1990, 1991). Jimmy Rollins is the NL winner at shortstop. New York Mets third baseman David Wright and Dodgers catcher Russell Martin round out the infield. The top offensive pitcher in the National League for 2007 is Arizona Diamondbacks hurler Micah Owings, who hit .333 with four home runs and 15 RBI during the regular season.

The specially designed Silver Slugger Award will be presented to each player by a representative of the Hillerich & Bradsby Co., makers of Louisville Slugger, the Official Bat of Major League Baseball, in a ceremony early in the 2008 season.  The trophy is three feet tall and bears the engraved name of the winner and his Silver Slugger teammates in his respective league.

The Silver Slugger Award was instituted by H&B in 1980 as a natural extension of the Silver Bat Award which is, as its name indicates, a silver-plated bat presented by Louisville Slugger to the batting champions in the AL and NL. This year’s Silver Bat Award winners are Holliday and Ordonez. Holliday hit .340 to win the NL batting title. Ordonez led the major leagues in batting with a .363 average and claimed the AL honor.  Both will receive their Silver Bat Awards in on-field presentations early in the 2008 season.




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