Dodgers star Mookie Betts won a Silver Slugger Award on Thursday for his offensive prowess among National League outfielders.
Betts was actually among the top three finishers for two Silver Slugger Awards this year, both in the outfield and at utility, the latter in its second year of existence for the award to honor multi-position players. In addition to his usual duties in right field, Betts in 2023 also regularly started at second base and even saw his first major league time at shortstop.
Most Dodgers Silver Slugger Awards
Believe it or not, a player winning two Silver Sluggers in one year is precedented. J.D. Martinez, while a teammate of fellow Silver Slugger-winning Betts in 2018 with the Red Sox, got two awards that year for both outfield and designated hitter.
Martinez still stands alone in the two-timers club, as old friend Cody Bellinger won the NL utility Silver Slugger Award this year.
Betts hit .307/.408/.579 with a career-high 39 home runs and 40 doubles, and set a major league record by driving in 107 runs out of the leadoff spot. Betts led the National League in bWAR (8.3) and was tied atop the circuit with Ronald Acuña Jr. in fWAR (8.3). Betts was second in the NL in slugging percentage, wOBA (.416), and wRC+ (167), third in home OPS (.987) and slugging percentage, fourth in on-base percentage, total bases (338), and runs scored (126), and fifth in batting average.
Betts has won a Silver Slugger Award in six seasons, including three of his four years with the Dodgers. His three Silver Sluggers with Los Angeles is second-most for the franchise in the 44-year history of the award, behind only Mike Piazza’s five awards in his five full seasons with the Dodgers.
Freddie Freeman led the majors with a franchise-record 59 doubles, tied for the most in the majors in the last 87 years. The first baseman set Los Angeles Dodgers records with 90 extra-base hits and 131 runs scored, and set career highs in hits (211) and total bases (361), all while hitting .331/.410/.567 with a 163 wRC+.
But he lost out to current Atlanta’s Matt Olson for the NL Silver Slugger at first base, with the two remarkably close in offensive production this season.
Battle for NL Silver Slugger at 1B
Catcher Will Smith, designated hitter J.D. Martinez, and third baseman Max Muncy were also among the top finishers at their positions in the NL.
Silver Slugger Awards are voted on by managers and up to three coaches from every team, with the caveat that they can’t vote for players on their own team.