A's catcher Stephen Vogt has been named the recipient of the 2015 Jim "Catfish" Hunter Award, the team announced today. The award, which honors an A's player whose play on the field and conduct in the clubhouse best exemplifies the courageous, competitive and inspirational spirit demonstrated by the late Hall of Fame pitcher, is voted on by A's players, coaches and staff.
Vogt becomes the first A's player to win the award in consecutive years and the second to win the award twice, joining Mark Ellis (2005, 2007). He will be honored prior to the game on Friday, Sept. 25 at 6:53 p.m. in a special on-field ceremony.
Vogt was named to his first American League All-Star team this year and is batting .267 with 20 doubles, three triples, 18 home runs (.459 slugging percentage) and 67 RBI in 128 games. He also has 52 walks for a .345 on-base percentage. In addition, Vogt has been honored as the A's nominee for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award and was selected as the recipient of the Dave Stewart Community Service Award.
Jim "Catfish" Hunter posted a 224-166 record and 3.26 ERA in 15 Major League seasons with the Kansas City/Oakland A's and New York Yankees. Hunter was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1987 and is one of five Oakland players to have his number retired, along with Rollie Fingers, Reggie Jackson, Dennis Eckersley and Rickey Henderson. He won five World Series rings during his career, was the 1974 AL Cy Young Award winner, an eight-time AL All-Star and has the most wins in Oakland history (131).
Hunter was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig's disease) in September of 1998 and died of complications from the disease on Sept. 9, 1999 at the age of 53.
Previous winners of the Jim "Catfish" Hunter Award include: Tim Hudson (2004), Mark Ellis (2005, 2007), Jason Kendall (2006), Mike Sweeney (2008), Kurt Suzuki (2009), Ben Sheets (2010), Josh Willingham (2011), Jonny Gomes (2012), Coco Crisp (2013) and Vogt (2014).