Cleveland Indians infielder and designated hitter Carlos Santana has been named the American League Player of the Week for the period ending July 27th. The announcement was made earlier today on MLB Network.
Santana batted .556 (15-for-27) with three doubles, six home runs, 10 RBI, five walks and eight runs scored in seven games to capture his first career weekly honor. It is the second straight Player of the Week Award for the Indians (also Jason Kipnis), marking the first back-to-back wins for the Tribe since Manny Ramirez (September 17, 2000) and Bartolo Colon (September 24, 2000). In addition to Kipnis and Santana, 2014 All-Star Michael Brantley won for the week ending June 15th. Among Major League leaders, Santana led all hitters in batting average, homers, hits, runs scored, total bases (36) and slugging percentage (1.333), and was second overall in RBI and on-base percentage (.636). Among his league counterparts, he was tied for second in walks. His five free passes during the week give him 72 on the season, leading all Major Leaguers.
On Tuesday, Santana tied a season high with four hits, including two doubles and a homer, to boost Cleveland over the Minnesota Twins, 8-2, at Target Field. The switch-hitter collected two RBI and two runs scored in the contest. After going 2-for-4 with a pair of walks and scoring the Indians' only run in a 2-1, 14-inning defeat at Kansas City on Thursday, the 28-year-old returned on Friday to the tune of two homers and three runs scored, but Cleveland was again outlasted by the Royals, 6-4. The two bombs marked the Dominican Republic native's first multi-homer effort of the season and the third in his five-year career. A day later, Santana blasted another homer, along with a double, but his efforts were not enough as Kansas City triumphed, 7-5. In the final tilt of a four-game set on Sunday, Carlos and the Indians offense posted double-digit runs for just the second time in July with a decisive 10-3 win over Kansas City. Santana went a perfect 3-for-3 with two homers, four RBI and a walk in the victory. With home runs in three consecutive games, Carlos matches his career best set from April 28-30, 2011. He finished the Kansas City series batting .643 (9-for-20) with a double, five homers, eight RBI, five walks and six runs scored, marking the first time in Royals history that an opposing player hit five home runs in a series against them. Additionally, he became the first player in Baseball this season to hit five homers in a series (last accomplished by San Francisco's Hunter Pence from September 12-15, 2013 against the Dodgers). Santana tied an Indians record for homers in a single series, a feat previously accomplished by Hal Trosky (1934), Joe Carter (1989), Albert Belle (1995), Matt Williams (1997) and Travis Hafner (2004).
Other noteworthy performances last week included 2014 All-Stars Jose Altuve (.464, 13 H) of the Houston Astros, Yoenis Cespedes (.333, 3 HR, 9 RBI) of the Oakland Athletics and Chris Sale (2-0, 0.60 ERA, 15.0 IP, 3 BB, 20 SO) of the Chicago White Sox; as well as David Ortiz (5 HR, 12 RBI) of the Boston Red Sox and Zach Britton (4 SV, 0.00 ERA, 0 BB, 7 SO) of the Baltimore Orioles.
In recognition of his American League Player of the Week Award, Carlos Santana will be awarded a watch courtesy of Game Time, the leader in licensed sports watches, available at MLB.com.