Munro: Guerrero Jr. latest Canuck to win player of week honours

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (Montreal, Que.) is just the latest Canadian to win American League Player of the Week honours.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (Montreal, Que.) is just the latest Canadian to win American League Player of the Week honours.

August 7, 2019

By Neil Munro

Canadian Baseball Network

The MLB Player of the Week award is a Major League Baseball award named by each of the American and National Leagues each week of the regular season. The week includes games from Monday through Sunday, and both batters and pitchers are eligible for consideration.

Montreal-born Vladimir Guerrero Jr. was recently named as the A.L. of the week for the week of July 29 to August 4, a week in which his grand slam homer featured among his 11 RBI. This was the second time he received this honour, as he was named the A.L. Player of the Week for the period of May 13 to May 19. The last Blue Jay to win the Player of the Week Award before Vlad was Kendrys Morales for the week of August 20-26, last year. Guerrero joins these other Canadian baseball stalwarts as a multiple winner: Jason Bay (5 times in his career), Larry Walker and Joey Votto (4 times each), Fergie Jenkins, James Paxton and Justin Morneau (3 times each) and Ryan Dempster (twice).

Of course MLB only instituted this award in 1974, so Jenkins was denied an opportunity to accumulate more weekly accolades for many of his very best seasons of work.

The following table outlines the Canadian baseball players who were named Player of the Week and Player of the Month. In the latter category, batters and pitchers receive separate awards.

The Player of the Month Award goes back to the 1958 season, however, from 1958 to 1973, only the National League named their Player of the Month, and pitchers and batters were pitted against one another for recognition each month. From 1975 to 1978, the N.L. named both the Player of the Month and the Pitcher of the Month. Beginning in 1979, both leagues recognized batters and pitchers with separate honours. Between 1974 and 1978, the American League named just one winner (a batter or pitcher) as Player of the Month. As such, the current system for naming both Players and Pitchers of the month in each league was initiated in 1979.

Four different Canadians have been named Pitcher of the Month (Ferguson Jenkins, Erik Bedard, Eric Gagne and James Paxton), while two Canadian batters have received this honour (Larry Walker twice and Justin Morneau). Since Jenkins captured his monthly award in 1971, he had to compete against all N.L. pitchers and batters for his award.

If we consider Freddie Freeman (with dual American-Canadian citizenship) for these awards, then he has added his name to the list below by capturing five Player of the Week Awards and one Player of the Month Award (for September of 2016).

We will watch with interest to see if Guerrero can maintain his hot streak through the entire month of August and possibly add his name to the other Canadian winners as Player of the Month. Hopefully one of his chief rivals for the monthly honour will be Bo Bichette if the sizzling start to his major league career continues.

Canadians Named Major League Player of the Week

 
     
PlayerTeamLeagueWeekDetails
Ferguson JenkinsTexasALSeptember 9-September 15, 19742-0 W-L; 1.00 ERA; 18 IP; 20 K; 2 BB; 2 CG; .209 OPBA
Ferguson JenkinsTexasALApril 24-April 30, 19782-0 W-L; 1.00 ERA; 18 IP; 9 K; 2 BB; 2 CG; .138 OPBA
Ryan DempsterFloridaNLJuly 2-July 8, 20012-0 W-L; 0.00 ERA; 17 IP; 8 K; 5 BB; .136 OPBA; 1 ShO
Corey KoskieMinnesotaALJune 16-June 22, 2003.429 BA (12/28); .893 SP (25/28); 10 Runs; 4 HR; 11 RBI; 1.393 OPS
Eric GagneLos AngelesNLAugust 4-August 10, 20034 G; 4 SV; 0.00 ERA; 4 IP; 8 K; 0 BB; .000 OPBA; 4 GF
Ryan DempsterChicagoNLJune 4-June 10, 20122-0 W-L; 0.00 ERA; 15 IP; 9 K; 1 BB; .137 OPBA
Larry WalkerColoradoNLMay 20-May 26, 1996.500 BA (11/22); 1.136 SP (25/22); 2 HR; 3 3B; 10 RBI; 1.655 OPS
Larry WalkerColoradoNLApril 1-April 6, 1997.440 BA (11/25); 1.240 SP (31/25); 8 Runs; 6 HR; 11 RBI; 1.721 OPS
Matt StairsOaklandALJuly 14-July 20, 1997.611 BA (11/18); 1.444 SP (26/18); 10 Runs; 5 HR; 11 RBI; 2.137 OPS
Larry WalkerColoradoNLSeptember 15-September 21, 1997.320 BA (8/25); .960 SP (24/25); 7 Runs; 5 HR; 12 RBI; 1.379 OPS
Larry WalkerColoradoNLApril 26-May 2, 1999.500 BA (12/24); 1.333 SP (32/24); 8 Runs; 6 HR; 18 RBI; 1.852 OPS
Jason BayPittsburghNLAugust 8-August 14, 2005.379 BA (11/29); .655 SP (19/29); 8 Runs; 2 HR; 8 RBI; 1.100 OPS
Jason BayPittsburghNLMay 15-May 21, 2006.333 BA (8/24); .750 SP (18/24); 5 Runs; 3 HR; 11 RBI; 1.157 OPS
Jason BayPittsburghNLMay 22-May 28, 2006.500 BA (13/26); 1.308 SP (34/24); 11 Runs; 7 HR; 15 RBI; 1.856 OPS
Jason BayPittsburghNLMay 21-May 27, 2007.500 BA (10/20); .950 SP (19/20); 6 Runs; 2 HR; 10 RBI; 1.521 OPS
Justin MorneauMinnesotaALJuly 2-July 8, 2007.438 BA (14/32); 0.875 SP (28/32); 7 Runs; 4 HR; 13 RBI; 1.346 OPS
Justin MorneauMinnesotaALJune 29-July 5, 2009.480 BA (12/25); 1.040 SP (26/25); 4 Runs; 4 HR; 8 RBI; 1.576 OBP
Joey VottoCinncinatiNLSeptember 21-September 27, 2009.560 (14/25); 1.080 SP (27/25); 10 2B; 8 RBI; 11 Runs; 1.673 OPS
Joey VottoCinncinatiNLJuly 25-July 31, 2011.385 BA (10/26); .923 SP (24/26); 7 Runs; 4 HR; 9 RBI; 1.390 OPS
Jason BayNew YorkNLSeptember 5-September 11, 2011.481 BA (13/27); .851 SP (23/27); 4 Runs; 2 HR; 10 RBI; 1.389 OPS
Russell MartinPittsburghNLApril 22 - April 28, 2013.375 BA (9/24); .958 SP (23/24); 5 Runs; 4 HR; 6 RBI; 1.333 OPS
Joey VottoCinncinatiNLMay 13-May 19, 2013.583 BA (14/24); .971 SP (22/24); 7 Runs; 2 HR; 5 RBI; 1.572 OPS
Justin MorneauColoradoNLApril 14 - April 20, 2014.375 BA (9/24); .875 SP (21/24); 6 Runs; 3 HR; 12 RBI; 1.221 OPS
James PaxtonSeattleALApril 10 - April 16, 20172-0 W-L; 0.00 ERA; 15 IP; 17 K; 3 BB; .122 OPBA
Joey VottoCinncinatiNLJune 26-July 2, 2017.524 BA (11/21); 1.095 SP (23/21); 6 Runs; 3 HR; 6 RBI; 1.725 OPS
James PaxtonSeattleALJuly 24 - July 30, 20172-0 W-L; 0.00 ERA; 13 IP; 18 K; 0 BB; .208 OPBA (Co-player)
Jaimeson TaillonPittsburghNLApril 2 - April 8, 20182-0 W-L; 1.26 ERA; 14.1 IP; 16 K; 2 BB; 1 ShO, .160 OPBA
Joey VottoCinncinatiNLApril 23 - April 29, 2018.348 BA (/23); .913 SP (21/23); 9 Runs; 4 HR; 7 RBI; 1.472 OPS
James PaxtonSeattleALMay 6-May 13, 20181-0 W-L; 1.80 ERA; 15 IP; 1 ShO, Pitched no-hitter (Co-player)
Vladimir Guerrero Jr.TorontoALMay 13-May 19, 2019.333 BA (7/21); .905 SP (19/21); 5 Runs; 4 HR; 9 RBI; 1.321 OPS
Vladimir Guerrero Jr.TorontoALJuly 29 - August 4, 2019.500 BA (13/26); .962 SP (25/26); 5 Runs; 3 HR; 11 RBI; 1.497 OPS
    

Canadians Named Major League Player of the Month (Non-pitchers

PlayerTeamLeagueMonthDetails
Justin MorneauMinnesotaALMay, 200727 G; BA .314; SP .667; 21 Runs; 10 HR; 29 RBI; 1.047 OPS
Larry WalkerColoradoNLJuly, 200223 G; BA .456; SP .911; 29 Runs; 11 HR; 29 RBI; 1.449 OPS
Larry WalkerColoradoNLApril, 199724 G; BA .438; SP .742; 18 Runs; 5 HR; 17 RBI; 1.247 OPS
Ferguson JenkinsChicagoNLJuly, 19716-1 W-L; 2.14 ERA; 59 IP; 49 K; 4 BB; 6 CG in 7 starts
    

Canadians Named Major League Pitcher of the Month

PlayerTeamLeagueMonthDetails
Erik BedardBaltimoreALJuly, 20076 G; 6 GS; 5-0 W-L; 2.21 ERA; 1 ShO; 40.2 IP; 16 BB; 52 K
Eric GagneLos AngelsNLJune, 200213 G; 11 SV; 13 GF; 14.1 IP; ERA 0.63; 0 BB; 24 K; 0-0 W-L
James PaxtonSeattleALJuly, 20176-0 W-L; 1.37 ERA; 39.1 IP; 46 K; 6 BB; .182 OPBA in 6 starts