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Oct, 2019

PONY Alumni Christian Yelich Wins 2019 Hank Aaron Award


MLB Awards Recognize Most Outstanding Offensive Performer in Each League

Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels and Christian Yelich of the Milwaukee Brewers have been selected as the American League and National League winners of the 2019 Hank Aaron Awards, Major League Baseball announced today prior to Game 2 of the World Series presented by YouTube TV.

Established in 1999 to honor the 25th anniversary of Aaron breaking Babe Ruth’s all-time home run record, the Hank Aaron Awards are officially sanctioned by MLB and recognize the most outstanding offensive performers in each League. Fans voted for the recipients on, and for the 10th straight year, a special panel of Hall of Fame players led by Hank Aaron joined fans in voting for the Awards. The Hall of Fame panel includes some of the greatest offensive players of all-time, such as Roberto Alomar, Johnny Bench, Craig Biggio, Ken Griffey Jr., Eddie Murray and Robin Yount. These Hall of Famers – who combined for 17,010 hits, 8,844 RBI and 2,275 home runs – were all personally selected by Aaron to lend their expertise to select the best offensive performer in each League.

“Mike Trout and Christian Yelich again showed why they’re considered two of the best all-around players in baseball,” said Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred Jr. “Both players have received the Hank Aaron Award previously, which demonstrates their ongoing excellence as offensive players. Their extraordinary seasons will be commemorated by this honor named after a living legend and one of the greatest players in baseball history, Hank Aaron.”  

“Mike Trout and Christian Yelich continue to have outstanding seasons and are very deserving of this award,” Hank Aaron said. “Christian and Mike are great ambassadors of the game and their offensive play this year has been spectacular. I congratulate them on winning the award again.”

In his ninth Major League season, Trout led the Majors with a .483 on-base percentage while pacing the American League with a .645 slugging percentage and a 1.083 OPS.  Trout, who was named AL Player of the Week for the weeks ending April 7th and June 23rd, ranked second in the AL with a career-best 45 home runs. The two-time AL Most Valuable Player, who earned his eighth consecutive All-Star selection, also ranked second in the AL in WAR (8.3) and runs created (145).

“I would like to extend a sincere thank you to Hank Aaron, the Hall of Famers and fans for this honor,” Trout said. “This would not be possible without the support of my teammates, coaches, family and my wife, Jessica. I am humbled and thankful to win this award.”

In his seventh Major League season, Christian Yelich led the Majors with a .671 slugging percentage and a 1.100 OPS, while also leading the National League in batting average (.329), offensive WAR (7.3) and on-base percentage (.429). Yelich, who was named an NL All-Star for the second consecutive season, finished the year with at least 100 runs scored for the third consecutive season and set career-highs with 44 home runs and 30 stolen bases to go along with his 97 RBI.  The 2018 NL Most Valuable Player also took home NL Player of the Week honors for the weeks ending March 31st and April 21st.

“I want to give a big thanks to Hank Aaron, the Hall of Fame voters and my teammates and coaching staff,” Yelich said. “Hank Aaron is such an important person in the history of baseball and the city of Milwaukee.  To receive this award is an enormous honor and I look forward to sharing this excitement with my family and our great fans.”

Past winners of the Aaron Awards include J.D. Martinez and Christian Yelich (2018); Jose Altuve and Giancarlo Stanton (2017); Kris Bryant and David Ortiz (2016); Josh Donaldson and Bryce Harper (2015); Giancarlo Stanton and Mike Trout (2014); Miguel Cabrera and Paul Goldschmidt (2013); Miguel Cabrera and Buster Posey (2012); José Bautista and Matt Kemp (2011); José Bautista and Joey Votto (2010); Derek Jeter and Albert Pujols (2009); Aramis Ramirez and Kevin Youkilis (2008); Alex Rodriguez and Prince Fielder (2007); Derek Jeter and Ryan Howard (2006); David Ortiz and Andruw Jones (2005); Manny Ramirez and Barry Bonds (2004); Alex Rodriguez and Albert Pujols (2003); Alex Rodriguez and Barry Bonds (2001-02); Carlos Delgado and Todd Helton (2000); and Manny Ramirez and Sammy Sosa (1999).

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