05/24/2010 4:07 PM ET
Bank of America Presents Major League Baseball's Players of the Week
Nelson Cruz of the Texas Rangers named the Bank of American Presents the American League Player of the Week
Texas Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz, who is among the American League's leading outfielders in the first All-Star balloting figures released today, has been named Bank of America Presents the American League Player of the Week for the period ending May 23rd. Bank of America, the Official Bank of Major League Baseball, is the presenting sponsor of the American League and National League Player of the Week Awards, which reflect Bank of America's long-standing tradition of promoting and recognizing higher standards of accomplishment.
In seven games last week, Nelson hit .458 (11-24) with five runs scored, two home runs and a Major League-best 12 RBI while matching an A.L. best with five doubles. Cruz, who hit safely in all seven of his games, also posted a .917 slugging percentage and a .533 on-base percentage. On May 19th, Nelson connected for a game-winning sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth inning, breaking a 3-3 tie against the Baltimore Orioles in the second walk-off plate appearance of his career. In the final game against the Orioles on May 20th, Nelson collected a career-high four hits which included a three-run homer en route to a 13-7 victory and a two-game sweep over the O's. On May 21st, the 29-year-old knocked in his second game-winning RBI of the week when he laced a fourth inning double in an Interleague matchup against the Chicago Cubs at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, giving Texas a 2-1 victory. During a homestand last week, the 2009 All-Star mounted a six-game RBI streak, totaling 12 RBI. Despite a trip to the disabled list in early May, Cruz is hitting .337 with 10 doubles, nine home runs and 33 RBI so far this season. This marks Nelson's first career weekly award. Bidding for his second consecutive trip to the Midsummer Classic, Cruz ranks third among all A.L. outfielders with 307,928 votes in balloting for the 81st All-Star Game, trailing only Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners and Carl Crawford of the Tampa Bay Rays.
Other noteworthy performances included Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Edwin Encarnacion, who led the Majors with six home runs, a 1.316 slugging percentage and 25 total bases. Also considered were Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Ben Zobrist, who led the A.L. with a .500 batting average, and Oakland Athletics southpaw Gio Gonzalez, who posted a perfect 2-0 record with a 1.80 ERA.
The Bank of America Presents the American League Player of the Week, Nelson Cruz, is awarded a watch courtesy of Game Time, the leader in licensed sports watches, available at MLB.com.
Adrian Gonzalez of the San Diego Padres named Bank of America Presents the National League Player of the Week
San Diego Padres first baseman Adrian Gonzalez has been named Bank of America Presents the National League Player of the Week for the period of May 17-23, 2010. Bank of America, the Official Bank of Major League Baseball, is the presenting sponsor of the National League and American League Player of the Week Awards, which reflect Bank of America's long-standing tradition of promoting and recognizing higher standards of accomplishment.
Gonzalez's nine RBI were tied for first in the National League while his 12 hits and .444 (12-27) batting average were both tied for third on the week. The two-time All-Star was second in the N.L. with a .559 on-base percentage while slugging .778, scoring six runs and collecting 21 total bases. On Wednesday, the San Diego native went 3-for-5 with a walk and a career-best six RBI, leading his N.L. West-leading Padres to a 10-5 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers. The lefty slugger drove in the go-ahead runs with a three-run homer in the fourth inning, his ninth four-bagger of the season. Gonzalez continued to swing a hot bat in the first Interleague series of the season, posting a 4-for-5 performance on Friday with three doubles, three runs scored and an RBI in a 15-8 loss to Seattle. After going hitless on Saturday, the two-time Rawlings Gold Glove Award winner bounced back with his third multi-hit performance of the week on Sunday, going 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored in an 8-1 victory over the M's. This is Adrian's fourth career weekly, the most recent being for the period ending August 16th, 2009.
Other nominees this past week included Adrian's San Diego teammate, Clayton Richard (2-0, 1.29, 11 SO); Jason Bay (.500, 2 HR, 9 R) of the New York Mets; Cincinnati's Joey Votto (.393, 2 HR, 8 RBI, .485 OBP), Scott Rolen (.389, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 1.000 SLG), Laynce Nix (.533, 3 HR, 7 RBI) and Johnny Cueto (2-0, 2.08, 12 SO); Philadelphia's Ryan Howard (.360, 2 HR, 8 RBI); Casey Blake (.423, 3 HR, .808 SLG) and John Ely (2-0, 13.0 IP, 11 SO) of the Los Angeles Dodgers; Florida's Jorge Cantu (.462, 12 H, .548 OBP) and Josh Johnson (2-0, 0.00, 9 SO); Washington's Cristian Guzman (.444, 12 H, .483 OBP); and Arizona's Edwin Jackson (2-0, 2.87 ERA, 15.2 IP, 21 SO).
The Bank of America Presents the National League Player of the Week, Adrian Gonzalez, is awarded a watch courtesy of Game Time, the leader in licensed sports watches, available at MLB.com.