Aroldis Chapman of the Cincinnati Reds has been selected as the winner of the Major League Baseball Delivery Man of the Month Award for August, it was announced today. This Major League Baseball award recognizes the most outstanding relief pitcher during each month of the regular season as voted on by a panel from Major League Baseball.
It marks the second straight honor for Chapman, who becomes just the second pitcher to win the award in consecutive months, joining Tampa Bay’s Rafael Soriano, who accomplished the feat in July and August 2010.
Chapman went 1-0 with a 0.68 ERA over 13 appearances in August. The 24-year-old recorded a Major League-best 11 saves, successfully converting each of his opportunities while allowing just one run over 13.1 innings pitched. In addition, the hard-throwing left-hander permitted eight hits and walked two with 18 strikeouts. The Cuban native converted saves in three consecutive games against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field from August 10th – 12th, allowing just one hit with six strikeouts over 3.1 innings pitched. His save on August 12th marked his 16th consecutive appearance with a save to set a franchise record, eclipsing the previous mark of 15 set by Jeff Shaw in 1997. In the first game of a doubleheader on August 18th against the Cubs at Great American Ball Park, Chapman surrendered two hits and a run while converting a save, ending a run of 23 consecutive scoreless appearances, which marked the best stretch by a Reds reliever since Arthur Rhodes tied the Major League record with 33 consecutive scoreless appearances in 2010. Despite not becoming the full-time closer until May 20th, Chapman is tied for the N.L. lead with 34 saves as he attempts to become the first Reds pitcher to lead the league in saves since Shaw (42 in 1997). Aroldis has converted 26 consecutive save opportunities, a single-season franchise record and three more than the previous mark shared by John Franco (1988) and Rob Dibble (1991). Chapman’s ERA against N.L. opponents is 0.30 and opposing batters are hitting .114 (23-for-201) in those contests.
Other relievers receiving votes included Baltimore Orioles closer Jim Johnson (0-0, 0.00 ERA, 10 SV, 10.2 IP, 8 SO); Kansas City Royals closer Greg Holland (2-0, 0.63 ERA, 9 SV, 14.1 IP, 13 SO); and J.J. Putz (0-0, 0.00 ERA, 9 SV, 12.2 IP, 15 SO) of the Arizona Diamondbacks.