Tuesday, November 18, 2014

And The Winner of MLBPAA's 2014 Heart & Hustle Award Is...

...not Michael Brantley =(

Josh Harrison of the Pittsburgh Pirates was revealed as the winner of this year's Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association's Heart & Hustle Award. he was presented with his award tonight, on November 18, during the 15th Annual Legends for Youth Dinner at Capitale in New York City.

Harrison finished the 2014 season with a .315 batting average, 164 hits, 38 doubles, 13 home runs, 52 RBI, 77 runs, 18 stolen bases, 22 walks, and 81 strikeouts in 143 games. defensively, he played 1,027 innings in 127 games. Harrison saw time in both the infield and the outfield, playing 2nd base, 3rd base, shortstop, left field, and right field. he had a total of 151 putouts, 6 errors, and a .983 fielding percentage. additionally, he had 4 assists in 52 games as an outfielder.

the Heart & Hustle Award, created by the MLBPAA, is given to players who demonstrate passion for baseball and embody the values, spirit, and traditions of the game. one player from all 30 major league teams was named as a preliminary winner back on July 22, based on his passion, desire, and work ethic on and off the field. then, at the end of the year, fans, alumni, and active players voted on the final winner. it was later made known that the fan vote counted for just 5% of the overall decision. so unfortunately, we fan voters didn't have much of a say in the results of this award. all of this year's nominees can be found here.

it didn't seem likely that Michael would win 2014's H&H award, even though he fits the description to a T, but it was a great honor for him just to be named as the Cleveland Indians' recipient. it was a career first for him and i was so proud, particularly because he was chosen by former MLB players. regardless of him not being the overall winner, it still makes me very happy to see Michael getting recognized for things that he wasn't being recognized for in his previous seasons as a major league ballplayer. he put together an incredible year for himself, and i know we can expect more of the same in the upcoming years. =D

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