Third baseman Josh Donaldson and starting pitcher David Price of the Toronto Blue Jays have been named the American League Co-Players of the Week for the period ending August 9th. The announcement was made earlier today on MLB Network.
Donaldson batted .385 (10-for-26) with nine runs scored, two doubles, five home runs and eight RBI over seven games, while Price went 2-0 with a 0.60 ERA and 18 strikeouts in 15.0 innings pitched in his first two starts as a Blue Jay. This marks Price's first career weekly honor and Donaldson's third, last winning earlier this season for the period ending May 31st. Among his AL counterparts, Josh finished the week first in home runs, runs scored, total bases (27) and extra-base hits (7), second in slugging percentage (1.038), tied for second in RBI, tied for fourth in walks (5) and tied for fifth in on-base percentage (.484). David completed the period first in innings pitched, tied for first in wins and strikeouts, and tied for fourth in ERA.
Donaldson, the 48th overall selection by the Chicago Cubs in the 2007 MLB Draft, hit and scored a run in each of Toronto's last seven contests with the Blue Jays going a perfect 7-0 during this streak. On Friday night against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium, the 29-year-old slugger clubbed his career-high 30th home run of the season. Among his club-leading 31 home runs this season, 29 have come with him playing the hot corner, the most by any Blue Jays third baseman since Troy Glaus hit 33 round-trippers in 2006. Since 2013, Major League Baseball's top vote-getter for the 2015 Midsummer Classic has logged the most home runs (80) and RBI (262) of any third baseman in the Majors. Price, who was acquired at the trade deadline from the Detroit Tigers, was equally impressive in his debut week for Toronto. In his first start with the Blue Jays against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field, the five-time AL All-Star spun 8.0 innings of one-run ball and registered 11 strikeouts. David's 11 strikeouts were the most ever by a pitcher making their Toronto debut, eclipsing Roger Clemens' nine-strikeout debut in 1997. The last pitcher to fan 11 batters in his debut with a new team was Collin McHugh of the Houston Astros on April 22, 2014 against the Seattle Mariners. In his second start of the week at Yankee Stadium on Saturday, the top overall selection of the 2007 MLB Draft improved to 11-4 following an impressive 7.0 inning blanking. Toronto's new ace is now 5-0 with a 1.85 ERA in his last seven starts at Yankee Stadium.
Other noteworthy performances last week included their Toronto teammate Edwin Encarnacion (.364, 4 2B, 2 HR, 8 RBI); Seattle's Nelson Cruz (.458, 7 R, 11 H, 4 HR); Michael Brantley (.522, 6 R, 12 H, 5 RBI) of the Cleveland Indians; Chris Davis (.318, 7 R, 3 HR, 8 RBI) of the Baltimore Orioles; Chris Bassitt (1-0, 0.66 ERA, 13.2 IP, 17 SO) of the Oakland A's; and Ian Kinsler (.417, 8 R, 4 XBH, 3 RBI) of the Detroit Tigers.
In recognition of their American League Co-Players of the Week Awards, Josh Donaldson and David Price will each be awarded a watch courtesy of Game Time, the leader in licensed sports watches, available at MLB.com.