09/10/07 7:10 PM ET
Wilson named NL Player of the Week
Pirates shortstop bats .615 with 16 hits and 11 RBIs
By Leslie Parker / MLB.com
Wilson finished the week of Sept. 9 with a National League-best .615 average and drove in 11 runs. For that, Wilson was named Bank of America Presents the National League Player of the Week.
"You just have to stay positive, because there are so many negatives going around," said Wilson, who had been the subject of trade speculation earlier in the season. "But it's like a domino effect. When you're going good, it keeps going good."
Good may be an understatement for the week that Wilson had. He was named as the Pirates' nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet for the third year in a row. He also led the NL in slugging with a 1.077 slugging percentage while collecting 16 hits and rounding up 28 total bases.
Wilson gives some of the credit for the hot streak to his teammates, exemplifying the old adage that hitting is contagious.
""It's nice," said Wilson. "It's almost the same as a really bad slump. I really don't know why it's happening or what's going on. ... I think I feed off [teammate Ronny] Paulino and the way he's swinging the bat right now. He's in the seven hole and I'm in the eight hole, and we're just trying to be the end-of-the-line one-two punch. It's been nice that we've both been able to contribute down at the bottom of the order."
The 29-year-old recorded multiple hits In six of the seven games he played last week, including a four-hit performance on Sept. 3 at St. Louis. The offensive outburst over the week brought Wilson's yearlong average up to .289.
The hot week continues a turnaround for Wilson, who started the season off on the wrong foot. Wilson averaged just .220 in May and July before busting out to hit .362 in August and .552 so far in September.
But Wilson seems to have found a comfort zone while hitting in the no. 8 spot for the Pirates. He's averaging .304 in that position, tops in the NL.
"I try to take pride in everything I do," said Wilson. "If I'm going to be hitting eighth, I'm going to try to be the best eighth hitter that I can be. Wherever I hit, I have to do my job."
Wilson will receive a luxury Swiss Torneau timepiece as recognition for the award.
Leslie Parker is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.