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Zack Greinke named winner of the "Major League Baseball Clutch Performer of the Month Presented by Pepsi" for April05/07/2009 12:32 PM ET
By mlb - greinke / MLB.com
Zack Greinke of the Kansas City Royals was selected by fans in an online vote as the winner of the "Major League Baseball Clutch Performer of the Month Presented by Pepsi" for April, it was announced today. The award recognizes the player who performed his best when the game was on the line. Pepsi has been the "Official Soft Drink of Major League Baseball" since 1997.
The "MLB Clutch Performer of the Month Presented by Pepsi" winner is selected by the fans from a list of six nominees chosen by a special editorial panel from MLB.com, the official website of Major League Baseball. During the first week of each month, fans can visit a microsite powered by MLB.com specifically created for the Clutch Performer platform, pepsiclutch.mlb.com, to vote for the nominee they believe was the best Clutch Performer during the previous month. Fans can also go to the site to enter a season long sweepstakes for a trip for two to the 2009 & 2010 Major League Baseball All-Star Games.
Greinke posted a perfect 5-0 record in his five April starts, fashioning a 0.50 ERA and striking out at least seven batters in each outing. In his 36.0 innings pitched, he allowed just two earned runs on 24 hits, fanning 44 batters against just eight walks. Greinke, now in his sixth Major League season, tossed 43.0 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run, dating back to September 13, 2008. In addition, he entered the company of Don Drysdale and Orel Hershiser as the only hurlers in Major League history to record six straight starts without permitting an earned run. Three of his five wins came against the Chicago White Sox, the Cleveland Indians and the Detroit Tigers, all American League Central rivals. The 25-year-old Greinke threw back-to-back, 10-strikeout complete games on April 18th and April 24th. On April 18th at Texas, the Florida native fired his first career shutout. Greinke, the sixth overall pick of the 2002 First-Year Player Draft, followed up by going the distance against Detroit on April 24th, permitting just three hits and one unearned run. With another shutout on May 4th against the White Sox, Greinke is now the third pitcher in Royals history to win his first six decisions, joining Bret Saberhagen in 1987 and Jose Lima in 2003.
At the conclusion of the season, fans will have the opportunity to vote on the "Major League Baseball Clutch Performer of the Year Presented by Pepsi" award winner at MLB.com and the award will be presented during the Major League Baseball postseason. Last season, CC Sabathia was named the recipient of the "2008 MLB Clutch Performer of the Year Presented by Pepsi."
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