(Reuters) - Angels outfielder Mike Trout was a unanimous winner of the American League Most Valuable Player Award, and Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw claimed National League honors in an LA sweep on Thursday.
The 23-year-old Trout broke through after back-to-back years as runner-up to Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera in voting by members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America.
Kershaw, named Cy Young winner as the league’s top pitcher on Wednesday, became the first NL pitcher to win the MVP award since Bob Gibson of the St. Louis Cardinals in 1968.
The 26-year-old Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander, who was 21-3 with a 1.77 ERA, won with 18 first-place votes in achieving the rare double while runner-up Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins received eight.
Trout who was the 2012 AL Rookie of the Year, blasted 36 home runs, had 111 RBIs, batted .287 and became the first player to lead his league in runs scored his first three years in the majors, topping the AL with 115.
Also known as an outstanding defensive player, Trout helped the Los Angeles Angels to the AL West title with a 98-64 record that was the best in Major League Baseball.
The centerfielder received all 30 first-place votes with Tigers designated hitter Victor Martinez and Cleveland Indians outfielder Michael Brantley finishing second and third, respectively.
Kershaw became the fourth NL pitcher to register the Cy Young/MVP double following Gibson and fellow Dodgers Sandy Koufax (1963) and Don Newcombe (1956).
The curve-balling lefty led the major leagues in earned run average for a record fourth consecutive year.
Runner-up Stanton belted 37 home runs and drove in 105 with a .288 batting average despite missing the final three weeks of the season after being hit in the face with a pitch.
Last year’s NL MVP, Andrew McCutchen of the Pittsburgh Pirates, finished third in the voting after hitting 25 home runs with 83 RBIs and a .314 batting average and 18 stolen bases.
Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Frank Pingue