What happened. St. Louis Cardinals’ pitcher Adam Wainwright named by Louisville Slugger as the best hitting pitcher in the National League in 2017.
The story. The “Silver Slugger Award” is presented by Louisville Slugger to the best offensive player at every position in the American League and the National League. The winner is determined by votes from managers and coaches.
The numbers. Adam Wainwright posted a slash line of .262/.279/.452 with a pair of doubles and a pair of home runs in 42 at bats this season. He led all Cardinals pitchers in batting average, on base percentage, slugging percentage, home runs, runs scored, and tied for the lead in runs batted in.
On April 21st against Milwaukee, he went 2-for-3 and hit a two run home run to put the Cardinals on top 2-1. And then hit a two RBI single in the next inning to stretch the lead to four runs.
His next home run came on June 1st against the Dodgers. He hit a two-run home run to put the Cardinals on top 2-0 and the score would stay that way.
On July 22nd against Chicago, he only went 1-for-3, but that hit broke up a perfect game bid by Jon Lester in the sixth inning.
Wainwright led the his fellow pitchers in runs scored, batting average, slugging percentage and tied with Cardinals’ teammate Carlos Martinez in runs batted in with 11. He was second in home runs behind Madison Bumgarner, who started just 17 games this season.
He had a .462 batting average this season with runners in scoring position.
Over the past two seasons now, Wainwright has hit .231/.252/.452 with 9 doubles, a triple, 4 home runs, and 29 RBI in 119 plate appearances. Projected out to 600 plate appearances, that puts Wainwright on pace for 45 doubles, 5 triples, 20 home runs, and 146 RBI.
The impact. 3/10. This was an award that Wainwright had spoken of wanting to win many times.
Wainwright becomes the third Cardinals’ pitcher to win a Silver Slugger Award since they began giving out the award in 1980, joining Bob Forsch and Jason Marquis.