Royals' Kendrys Morales voted 2015 Edgar Martinez Outstanding DH

Major League Baseball announced today that Kendrys Morales of the Kansas City Royals has been voted the winner of the 2015 Edgar Martinez Outstanding Designated Hitter Award. Morales received 50 of the 88 first-place votes cast to garner the honor for the first time in his nine-year career. In addition to Morales, two previous Royals have been tabbed as the league's top designated hitter, Hal McRae (1976, 1980 & 1982) and Billy Butler (2012). Boston's David Ortiz, a seven-time winner of the ODH Award, finished second with 34 second-place votes after batting .267 (132-for-495) with 35 doubles, 32 homers and 99 RBI in 134 games as DH for the Red Sox this past season.

 

Kendrys batted .295 (156-for-529) with 39 doubles, 21 home runs, 104 RBI and 78 runs scored in 141 games as DH for the Royals, earning his first Louisville Slugger Silver Slugger Award and becoming the eighth different Royal (George Brett, Willie Wilson, McRae, Frank White, Gary Gaetti, Dean Palmer and Butler) to accomplish the feat. Among AL leaders, the 32-year-old finished the season tied for fourth in doubles (41), sixth in RBI (106), 12th in on-base percentage (.362), 13th in slugging percentage (.485) and 16th in batting average (.290).

 

The switch-hitting slugger led the AL and ranked second in the Majors with 53 two-out RBI. His total was the highest-ever by a Royal, passing Joe Randa, who held the previous club record with 46 two-out RBI in 2000. Morales finished the 2015 campaign with a .335 batting average in two-out situations, good for fourth in the AL, to go along with 18 doubles, a triple and 11 home runs. Moreover, the nine-year veteran became the first Royal to drive in over 100 runs in a season since Butler accounted for 107 RBI in his All-Star season of 2012. Morales was named the Royals Majestic Player of the Month for September/October after hitting .316 (31-for-98) with 24 runs scored, seven doubles, seven round-trippers and 16 RBI. He had a career day on September 20th in Detroit, becoming the first Royal to homer three times in a game since Danny Tartabull in 1991, while his 15 total bases in the contest set a franchise record. A major contributor in Kansas City winning its second World Series championship and first since 1985, the Royals' cleanup hitter finished third in home runs (4) and seventh in RBI (10) among 2015 Postseason participants. Additionally, the Cuban native became the third Royals player in franchise history to record a multi-homer game in the Postseason, joining Hall of Famer Brett and Willie Aikens, after hitting a pair of solo home runs in Game 1 of the ALDS vs. Houston.

 

Now in its 42nd season, the Outstanding Designated Hitter Award was renamed by Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig in a September 2004 ceremony at Safeco Field in honor of retiring Seattle Mariners' great Edgar Martinez. Ballots are cast by club beat writers, broadcasters and AL public relations departments with nominees including all players with a minimum of 100 at-bats as a designated hitter.

 

 

Previous Winners

1973 - Orlando Cepeda (Boston)

1974 - Tommy Davis (Baltimore)

1975 - Willie Horton (Detroit)

1976 - Hal McRae (Kansas City)

1977 - Jim Rice (Boston)

1978 - Rusty Staub (Detroit)

1979 - Willie Horton (Seattle)

1980 - Hal McRae (Kansas City)

1981 - Greg Luzinski (Chicago)

1982 - Hal McRae (Kansas City)

1983 - Greg Luzinski (Chicago)

1984 - Dave Kingman (Oakland)

1985 - Don Baylor (New York)

1986 - Don Baylor (Boston)

1987 - Harold Baines (Chicago)

1988 - Harold Baines (Chicago)

1989 - Dave Parker (Oakland)

1990 - Dave Parker (Milwaukee)

1991 - Chili Davis (Minnesota)

1992 - Dave Winfield (Toronto)

1993 - Paul Molitor (Toronto)

1994 - Not awarded

1995 - Edgar Martinez (Seattle)

1996 - Paul Molitor (Minnesota)

1997 - Edgar Martinez (Seattle)

1998 - Edgar Martinez (Seattle)

1999 - Rafael Palmeiro (Texas)

2000 - Edgar Martinez (Seattle)

2001 - Edgar Martinez (Seattle)

2002 - Ellis Burks (Cleveland)

2003 - David Ortiz (Boston)

2004 - David Ortiz (Boston)

2005 - David Ortiz (Boston)

2006 - David Ortiz (Boston)

2007 - David Ortiz (Boston)

2008 - Aubrey Huff (Baltimore)

2009 - Adam Lind (Toronto)

2010 - Vladimir Guerrero (Texas)

2011 - David Ortiz (Boston)

2012 - Billy Butler (Kansas City)

2013 - David Ortiz (Boston)

2014 - Victor Martinez (Detroit)