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2009 Silver Slugger teams announced11/12/2009 7:06 PM ET
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Louisville Slugger, celebrating 125 years in baseball this season, proudly announced the 2009 Silver Slugger Award winners tonight in a special hour-long telecast on MLB Network. There were many familiar faces among the 18 winners of the top offensive award in Major League Baseball.
Albert Pujols of the St. Louis Cardinals picked up his fifth Silver Slugger Award as the first baseman in the National League, while Derek Jeter snagged his fourth award in a row at shortstop in the American League. The Phillies' Chase Utley earned his fourth trophy for second base in the NL.
The Silver Slugger award winners were determined by a vote of Major League Baseball coaches and managers who named the players they felt were the best offensive producers at each position in both the American and National Leagues in 2009.
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.
Among the teams represented by this year's winners, the New York Yankees, the Toronto Blue Jays and the Los Angeles Dodgers each had two honorees. The Yankees' Mark Teixeira picked up his third award at first base -- he won the 2004 and 2005 Silver Slugger Awards while with the Texas Rangers. Aaron Hill and Adam Lind of the Toronto Blue Jays are both first-time winners, with Hill picking up the second base honor for the American League and Lind winning the designated hitter award. The Dodgers are well-represented in the outfield, as Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp both earned Silver Slugger Awards as top hitting outfielders in the National League.
The Marlins' Hanley Ramirez scored his second consecutive award for shortstop in the National League. Evan Longoria of the Tampa Bay Rays is a first-time Silver Slugger honoree, winning the American League's competition among third basemen. Likewise, the Nationals' Ryan Zimmerman won his first Silver Slugger Award for the National League at third base.
Four out of the six outfield selections were first-time Silver Slugger winners -- Jason Bay of the Boston Red Sox, Torii Hunter of the Los Angeles Angels, as well as Ethier and Kemp of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners picked up his third trophy and the Milwaukee Brewers' Ryan Braun collected his second straight award.
Past winners dominated the awards at the catcher and pitcher positions. Joe Mauer of the Twins and the Braves' Brian McCann both collected their third Silver Slugger Awards as catchers, while Carlos Zambrano earned his third trophy as a pitcher.
2009 Silver Slugger Winners
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 2010 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 Louisville Slugger 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 Joe Mauer of the Minnesota Twins and Hanley Ramirez of the Florida Marlins. Mauer hit .365 for the Twins to claim the AL honor. Ramirez won the NL batting title with a .342 average.
Both will receive their Silver Bat Awards in on-field presentations early in the 2010 season.
Louisville Slugger honored to partner with MLB Network on Silver Slugger announcements
The decision by Louisville Slugger and MLB Network to partner on the announcement of the 2009 Silver Slugger Awards was an extension of the storied company's long history with MLB. Louisville Slugger has learned over the years that MLB players have a great desire to win a Silver Slugger Award as validation of their offensive prowess. "This is our 125th year of making bats for professional baseball, and Louisville Slugger is The Official Bat of Major League Baseball," said Louisville Slugger president Marty Archer. "Now with MLB Network in place and having access to millions of baseball fans, it's appropriate that we work together to announce these important awards."
MLB Network launched on January 1, 2009 as the largest debut in cable television history and is currently available in approximately 54 million cable and satellite homes. With live games, original programming, highlights, classic games, and coverage of baseball events, MLB Network is the ultimate television destination for baseball fans.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.