Major League Baseball has announced that Nelson Cruz has been selected as the winner of the 2017 Edgar Martinez Outstanding Designated Hitter Award. It is the first time Cruz has won the award and the third time a Mariner has taken the honor for the best DH.
Cruz posted a slash line of .288/.375/.549 and led all DHs with 250 or more plate appearances in on-base percentage, slugging, runs (88), doubles (28) and home runs (38). He drove in 114 runs as a DH, and his 119 total RBIs were the most in the American League.
“Nelson is truly deserving of the Edgar Martinez Outstanding Designated Hitter of the Year Award,” said Martinez, Seattle’s current hitting coach and the award’s namesake since 2004. “I see first-hand how his presence both in the clubhouse and in our lineup provides stability that makes his teammates around him better. While he goes about his work in a quiet way, we are glad that he is receiving the national recognition that he deserves.”
In his first year as a full-time DH, Cruz set career-highs in RBIs, walks and on-base percentage. It was his second straight season with 100 RBIs or more and the third of his career.