Six Baseball Factory Alums Earn Silver Slugger Honors
The honors for the 2017 baseball season continue to roll in and last night Silver Slugger awards were handed out to the game’s top hitters at each position and six former Baseball Factory standouts were voted by MLB managers and coaches.
Eric Hosmer – Hosmer not only got it done defensively in 2017, winning a Gold Glove earlier this week, but also put together one of his finest professional seasons with the bat. Becoming just the 10th Royals player to win a Silver Slugger, Hosmer who played all 162 games, posted career-highs in batting average (.318), on-base percentage (.385) and slugging percentage (.498). He finished in the top five in the American League in an assortment of categories, including hits (192 – 2nd most), while hitting 25 home runs and driving in 94 runs. Hosmer was a Baseball Factory 2006 Pre-Season All-American.
Francisco Lindor – The 23-year old improved upon his numbers from 2016’s American League pennant-winning Cleveland Indians ball club, and as such, won his first Silver Slugger award. The 2009 Team One South and Baseball Factory National Tryout alum doubled his home run out put from ’16 to ’17 (from 15 to 33), tallying a career high in doubles (44), driving in 89 and scoring 99 runs. His 81 extra-base hits (also had four triples) were a club record for a middle infielder and the most by a major league short stop in 10 years.
George Springer – Another player to win his first Silver Slugger award is this year’s World Series MVP, who broke out in a big way on a big stage in the postseason. Springer hit 34 home runs in 2017, all from the leadoff position to pace the Astros to a major league-leading 896 runs scored this season. Springer hit .283 with 29 doubles and 85 RBI and his OPS of .889 was third best in the American League behind Aaron Judge (1.049) and Justin Upton (.901) who is featured next.
Justin Upton – Upton, who attended the 2000 Team One East, 2002 Team One South and 2003 Team One National Showcase events, earned his third Silver Slugger award in his career after starting the season with the Detroit Tigers and later being dealt at the trade deadline to the Los Angeles Angels. Upton hit a combined .273 with 44 doubles, 35 homers, 109 RBIs and a .901 OPS to go along with scoring 100 runs.
Daniel Murphy – Murphy enjoyed a fine second season in Washington, earning his second-consecutive Silver Slugger award while hitting in a potent lineup. Murphy was second in the National League with a .322 batting average, tied the league lead in doubles (43) with 23 homers and 93 RBI. His .928 on-base percentage was also tops among National League second baseman. Murphy attended the 2002 Team One South Showcase.
Nolan Arenado – Arenado put together a huge season at the plate, hitting a career-best .309 with 43 doubles (tying Murphy) 37 homers and 130 RBI. This is Nolan’s third consecutive Silver Slugger award after leading the National League in home runs and RBI’s in 2015 and 2016. Arenado participated in the 2007 Ryan Lemmon Sophomore Showcase in Irvine, CA and the 2007 Team One West Showcase.