ARLINGTON, Texas -- Orioles outfielder Nelson Cruz’s remarkable May wasn’t enough to win the American League Player of the Month award, as hot-hitting Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Edwin Encarnacion beat him for the honor.
Cruz hit .339/.388/.748 with 13 homers and 27 RBIs in 30 games in May. He leads the majors with 20 homers and 52 RBIs heading into today’s series opener in Texas, which will be his first trip back to Arlington after playing eight years here.
But Encarnacion hit .281/.369/.763 with 16 homers and 33 RBIs in 30 games as the Blue Jays surged into first place in the American League East.
The Detroit Tigers' Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez also received consideration for the award.
The announcement came a day after Cruz won AL Player of the Week honors and passed the Boston Red Sox’s David Ortiz as the leading vote-getter among AL designated hitters in All-Star Game fan balloting.
In other Orioles news, Double-A Bowie first baseman Christian Walker and Low-A Delmarva right-hander Hunter Harvey were named the organization’s player and pitcher of the month, respectively.
The Orioles’ first-round pick last season, Harvey was 2-2 with a 1.30 ERA in five May starts for the Shorebirds, striking out 35 and allowing 17 hits in 27 2/3 innings.
He is 3-3 with a 1.68 ERA, compiling 64 strikeouts in 53 2/3 innings, on the season and was just named the starting pitcher for the Northern team in the upcoming South Atlantic League All-Star Game.
Walker, a fourth-round pick in 2012 out of South Carolina, hit .308/.403/.607 with nine homers and 27 RBIs in 29 games in May. He is hitting .319/.383/.574 with 15 homers and 47 RBIs for the Baysox this season.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun