ST. LOUIS (Reuters) - Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers and Paul Goldschmidt of the Arizona Diamondbacks were selected as the American and National League winners of the Hank Aaron Award, given to the most outstanding offensive player, it was announced on Sunday.
It was Cabrera’s second consecutive season winning the AL award, which was determined through fan voting on MLB.com and by a special panel of Hall of Fame players, led by Aaron.
The award was established by Major League Baseball in 1999 to honor the 25th anniversary of Aaron breaking Babe Ruth’s all-time home run record of 714 career roundtrippers.
Cabrera, 30, followed up his Triple Crown-winning season of 2012 with his third consecutive AL batting title after hitting .348 in 2013.
The eight-time All Star, who was the starting third baseman for the AL at the Midsummer Classic, became the first Tigers player to lead the AL in hitting in three consecutive seasons since Hall of Famer Ty Cobb accomplished the feat (1917-19).
The Venezuela native matched his career best with 44 home runs and collected 137 runs batted in for AL Central champions Detroit.
Goldschmidt batted .302 with 36 doubles, 36 home runs, 125 RBI, 99 walks and 103 runs scored for Arizona.
The 26-year-old led the National League in slugging percentage (.551), extra-base hits (75), RBIs and total bases (332), and tied for first in homers.
Goldschmidt, voted an All Star for the first time, also showed off his clutch-hitting ability in 2013.
Among all major leaguers, the right-handed slugger tied for first in go-ahead RBIs (37), go-ahead home runs (20), walk-off homers (three), and home runs after the eighth inning (seven).
Aaron presented the award to Cabrera before Sunday’s Game Four of the World Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and Boston Red Sox.
Goldschmidt is in Australia, promoting next year’s season-opening games there between the Diamondbacks and Dodgers.
”I want to congratulate Miguel, really,“ said Aaron. ”I watched him play when he was (starting) with the Florida Marlins.
”And I remember him so well. And I told someone then, I said, this kid is going to be an outstanding ballplayer. Not only a ballplayer, but an outstanding citizen.
“Someone that all of us can be very proud of. And I am so proud again to present this award to him.”
Editing by Peter Rutherford