April 2, 2018
Official Major League Baseball Press Release
Justin Smoak of the Toronto Blue Jays named American League Player of the Week
Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Justin Smoak has been named the American League Player of the Week presented by W.B. Mason for the period ending April 1. The announcement was made on Monday on MLB Network.
Smoak recorded a slash line of .467/.529/1.000 with two runs scored, seven hits, a pair of doubles, two home runs and eight RBI over Toronto's first four games of the 2018 campaign to earn his second career AL Player of the Week Award, last winning as a member of the Seattle Mariners for the week ending June 3, 2012.
Among his AL counterparts, Smoak finished his strong opening weekend first in RBI; second in total bases (15); tied for second in home runs and extra-base hits (4); tied for third in hits; tied for fourth in slugging percentage; seventh in batting average; and eighth in on-base percentage. This is Toronto's first weekly award since Smoak's All-Star teammate Josh Donaldson claimed weekly honors for the period ending June 19, 2016.
In Sunday afternoon's thrilling contest between Toronto and the New York Yankees at Rogers Centre, Smoak went 3-for-4 with a pair of home runs and a career-best six RBI. The latter round-tripper was a game-winning grand slam in the eighth inning, propelling the Jays to a 7-4 victory over the Yankees. The 2017 AL All-Star accounted for six of Toronto's seven runs scored via his seventh career multi-homer game. Moreover, Toronto blasted at least one home run in each of the Club's first four games of the 2018 season, doing so for the first time since 2011 when the Jays slugged homers in five straight games to begin the season. Smoak's outstanding game at the plate yesterday followed a three-hit performance from the night before, when the 29-year-old went 3-for-4 with a double and two RBI. Led by Smoak's hot start at the plate, Toronto won the final two games of the four-game set.
All-Star shortstop Xander Bogaerts (.471, 4 R, 6 XBH, 2 RBI) also posted a strong start for the Boston Red Sox. Following Saturday's contest against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field, Bogaerts had logged five doubles in the club's first three games of the season. The Aruba native became the fourth Major Leaguer since 1900 to accomplish the feat, joining Pop Dillon of the Detroit Tigers (1901), Jim Greengrass of the Cincinnati Reds (1954) and Carlos Beltrán of the New York Mets (2008).
Other noteworthy performances last week included José Berrios (1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 CG SHO, 6 SO) of the Minnesota Twins; designated hitter Matt Davidson of the Chicago White Sox, who became the fourth player in Major League history to record three home runs on Opening Day; outfielder Mitch Haniger (.625, 5 H, 2 HR, 3 RBI) of the Seattle Mariners; 2017 AL MVP Jose Altuve (.563, 5 R, 9 H, 1 SB) of the Houston Astros; and Smoak's teammate Kevin Pillar (.462, 4 R, 2 XBH, 3 SB).
In recognition of his American League Player of the Week Award, Justin Smoak will be awarded a watch courtesy of Rockwell.