KANSAS CITY -- Ian Kinsler's August push couldn't help the Tigers creep closer in the American League Wild Card chase. At least it didn't go unnoticed.
It's a small consolation for Kinsler, but the second baseman was voted the Tigers' Player of the Month by media members. He batted .362 (38-for-105) with 22 runs scored, seven doubles, three triples, four home runs and 15 RBIs. He beat out Miguel Cabrera and J.D. Martinez for the honor, among others.
It wasn't the goal Kinsler had in mind, though. He wants to win, and he has been trying to push teammates in the same direction.
"You try to lead by example," Kinsler said. "Hopefully it has a positive impact."
Kinsler was one of the most vocal players after the July non-waiver Trade Deadline deals, saying the Tigers still had something to play for and that the season is not just four months long. His offense started turning in mid-July after a rough first half, batting .381 (24-for-63) from the All-Star break to the end of July. It wasn't a major adjustment on Kinsler's part, he said, so much as it was the culmination of work he had been putting in all summer.
Kinsler couldn't keep up that pace in August, but he wasn't far off. He had 12 multi-hit games in August out of 26 games played, including a 5-for-5 effort against the Cubs on Aug. 18 at Wrigley Field.
The push continues in September, even though the Tigers' playoff chase does not. He went 2-for-5 with a home run and three RBIs in his first game of the new month on Tuesday against the Royals.
Justin Verlander won Pitcher of the Month honors for his midsummer revival, allowing six earned runs on 19 hits over 36 innings despite a 1-3 record.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.