New York, NY, Friday, October 29, 2010 … In a season marked by extraordinary performances on and off the field, Major League baseball players today bestowed their highest honors on two players – Colorado Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez is Player of the Year and Detroit Tigers infielder Brandon Inge is the Marvin Miller Man of the Year. The Major League Baseball Players Trust will honor Gonzalez and Inge, the top Players Choice Award winners, with donations of $50,000 each to the charities of their choice. The Awards announcements were made this morning on the Mike & Mike in the Morning show during the finale of ESPN Radio’s exclusive five-day Players Choice Awards broadcast special presented by Majestic Athletic and 2K Sports and benefiting the Major League Baseball Players Trust.
Gonzalez, 25, helped keep the Rockies postseason hopes alive for most of the season with an offensive performance worthy of one of the game’s rising young superstars. In a career-high 145 games played this season, he led all National Leaguers in average (.336), hits (197), and total bases (351). Playing in just his third Major League season, Gonzalez finished second among National Leaguers in RBI (117) and slugging percentage (.598), third in runs (111) and fourth in homers (34). Earlier this week, Gonzalez captured his first-ever Players Choice Award when he was named the 2010 National League Outstanding Player. The Players Trust will contribute a total of $70,000 to the charity (or charities) of his choice in honor of his two Players Choice Awards.
Inge captured the Marvin Miller Man of the Year award, named for the founding executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association and awarded to the player whose on-field and off -field performances most inspire others to higher levels of achievement. Inge displays as much passion to give back to others as he shows on the diamond as one of the game’s most sure-handed infielders. Inge, 33 and a 10-year veteran of the Detroit Tigers, works closely with C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Inge frequently visits C.S. Mott and other local hospitals to form lasting bonds with children and their families. In 2007, Inge and his wife, Shani, made a $100,000 donation to Mott Children’s Hospital to help fund a pediatric cancer infusion center. On the field, this season Inge finished with 127 hits, including 28 doubles, in 144 games. In 1,226.2 innings played, Inge committed just nine errors to give him the third-best fielding percentage (.977) among all AL third basemen.
The Players Choice Awards annually honor the outstanding player, rookie, pitcher and comeback player in each league, while the Player of the Year and Man of the Year awards bestow top honors without regard to league. Balloting for the Players Choice Awards was conducted in September under the supervision of accounting firm KPMG.
2010 Players Choice Award winners in all categories will designate charities to receive grants totaling $260,000 from the Major League Baseball Players Trust, the charitable foundation created and run by the players themselves. (Individual League winners receive $20,000 grants while Player of the Year and Man of the Year receive $50,000 grants.)
The Players Trust raises funds and attention for issues affecting the needy and promotes community involvement. Since 1992, the Players Trust has recognized the outstanding on-field and off-field performances of Players Choice Awards winners by contributing $3 million to charities around the world.
2010 Players Choice Awards Finalists: (Winners in bold/underline)
|Austin Jackson (R) 2010 A.L. Rookie of the Year |
Photo by Mathew Harding / In Play! Magazine
|Brandon Inge MLB 2010 Man of the Year |
Photo by Jennifer MacPherson / In Play! Magazine