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Orioles shut out of Silver Slugger awards

Orioles' Chris Davis reacts after stranding two runners on a strike out in the fifth inning against the New York Mets, Wednesday, May 6, 2015, in New York.
Orioles' Chris Davis reacts after stranding two runners on a strike out in the fifth inning against the New York Mets, Wednesday, May 6, 2015, in New York. (Kathy Willens / Associated Press)

It looks like leading the majors in home runs these days doesn't guarantee a Silver Slugger anymore.

Despite leading the majors with 47 homers this season, Orioles free-agent first baseman Chris Davis did not win the American League Silver Slugger at first base.

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Instead, the Silver Slugger – which is awarded to the top offensive player at each position in each league – went to Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera on Thursday night during an MLB Network announcement show.

The Silver Sluggers, which have been awarded since 1980, are decided by a vote of major league managers and coaches.

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This marked the second straight season that the majors' home run leader did not win a Silver Slugger.

Last year, Nelson Cruz hit a major league-leading 40 homers for the Orioles, but did not win the award. Cruz, however, did win the Silver Slugger this year after hitting a career-high 44 homers in his first season with the Seattle Mariners.

The last major league home run king to win the Silver Slugger was Davis in 2013 following his 53-homer campaign for the Orioles.

Cabrera was limited to 119 games because of injury, but still won his fourth AL batting title with a .338 average. He also led the AL in on-base percentage (.440) while finishing with 18 homers and 76 RBIs.

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Silver Slugger ballots are filled out in September, so Davis' fantastic finish to the season – he hit .318/.463/.748 with 12 homers and 25 RBIs in September and October – likely didn't have as much of an impact with voters.

Orioles third baseman Manny Machado was also a Silver Slugger finalist, but AL MVP favorite Josh Donaldson won the AL award at third base. The 23-year-old Machado set career highs in batting average (.286), runs scored (102), home runs (35), RBIs (86) and stolen bases (20) this past season.

Davis, whose 159 homers since the beginning of the 2012 season are the most in the majors over that span, has until Friday at 5 p.m. to accept the Orioles' one-year, $15.8 million qualifying offer. That's a formality. Davis is expected to get a lucrative long-term deal on the free-agent market, so he will decline the qualifying offer by the deadline. But the Orioles are still attempting to re-sign Davis.

eencina@baltsun.com
twitter.com/EddieInTheYard

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