Rockies Nolan Arenado honored by MLB players for his “tenacity, perseverance and hustle”

Rockies Nolan Arenado honored by MLB players for his “tenacity, perseverance and hustle”

The moment not only defined the Rockies’ 2017 season, it also personified the baseball heart of Nolan Arenado.

On June 18 at Coors Field — Father’s Day — Arenado blasted a walk-off, three-run homer off closer Mark Melancon to beat San Francisco 7-5 in front of a crowd of 48,341. But this wasn’t just any walk-off homer. It completed the first cycle of Arenado’s career and gave the Rockies their first four-game sweep of the Giants in the team’s 25-year history.

With blood streaming down his face because of a cut suffered during the celebration at home plate, and with infield dirt smearing his white jersey, Arenado worked the crowd into a frenzy that afternoon.

Arenado doesn’t play baseball in order to to be rewarded for enthusiasm.  Nonetheless, he was honored  Wednesday night during the Players Choice Awards. He won the Majestic Athletic always game award, as voted on by his fellow major-leaguers. Arenado was given the award “to the player who best exhibits grit, tenacity, perseverance and hustle.”

“I have a friend who tells me, ‘You want to be known as someone who plays old-school ball.’ That’s kind of how I approach it,” Arenado said on the MLB Network. “I’m not really the flashiest guy. I just play hard and I want to be known as an old-school baseball player.”

Arenado, who won his fifth consecutive Gold Glove on Tuesday night, was a finalist for the National League’s outstanding player award. So was teammate Charlie Blackmon, but they lost out to Miami slugger Giancarlo Stanton. Arenado also was a finalist for player of the year, but Houston second baseman Jose Altuve captured that award.

The Players Choice Awards honor the outstanding player, rookie, pitcher and comeback player in each league, as well as an overall player of the year and Marvin Miller man of the year, presented to the player “who inspires others through his on-field performances and contributions to his community.”

Washington slugger Ryan Zimmerman was named the NL’s comeback player, beating out Rockies closer Greg Holland.

Following is the complete list of this year’s winners:

Player of the year: Jose Altuve (Astros)
Marvin Miller man of the year: Anthony Rizzo (Cubs)
Majestic Athletic always game award: Nolan Arenado (Rockies)

American League

Outstanding player: Jose Altuve (Astros)
Outstanding pitcher: Corey Kluber (Indians)
Outstanding rookie: Aaron Judge (Yankees)
Comeback player: Mike Moustakas (Royals)

National League

Outstanding player: Giancarlo Stanton (Marlins)
Outstanding pitcher: Max Scherzer (Nationals)
Outstanding rookie: Cody Bellinger (Dodgers)
Comeback player: Ryan Zimmerman (Nationals)

 

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