Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers and Buster Posey of the Giants paused from their Game 3 preparations on Saturday at Comerica Park to each accept the Hank Aaron Award as the outstanding offensive performer in their respective leagues -- the first time in the presentation's history that both winners were participating in the World Series.
Cabrera won the first Triple Crown since 1967, leading the American League with a .330 average, 44 homers and 139 RBIs. The Venezuela native became the first Latino-born winner of the Triple Crown. The seven-time All-Star topped the AL with 377 total bases, 84 extra-base hits and a .606 slugging percentage, while he was second with 109 runs scored and 205 hits, fourth with a .393 on-base percentage and seventh with 40 doubles.
Posey led the Majors with a .336 average, becoming the first National League catcher to win the batting title since Ernie Lombardi of the Boston Braves in 1942. The 25-year-old Florida State product led the Giants in homers (24), RBIs (103), doubles (39), walks (69), on-base percentage (.408) and slugging (.549).
"I congratulate Miguel Cabrera and Buster Posey on earning the 2012 Hank Aaron Awards as the most outstanding offensive players in each league," Commissioner Bud Selig said. "Miguel joined historic company this year by winning the game's first Triple Crown in 45 years, and Buster was a consistent force in returning to the field triumphantly this year. Most importantly, Miguel and Buster helped their Clubs reach the World Series. I salute them on winning an award named in honor of a pillar of our game, my friend Hank Aaron."
"It is a real privilege to have my name on the award that recognizes the most outstanding offensive performer in each league," said Aaron, who was back at his customary presentation-ceremony seat after being forced to miss last year's while rehabbing after a left knee-replacement surgery. "I want to congratulate Miguel and Buster on their fantastic seasons and express my gratitude to the Hall of Famers and fans who helped select this year's winners."
Fans voted for the award exclusively on MLB.com, joining a panel of voting Hall of Famers that included Aaron, Tony Gwynn, Paul Molitor, Joe Morgan and Robin Yount. Those five legends combined for 15,890 hits, 1,643 home runs and 7,281 RBIs.
Established in 1999 to honor the 25th anniversary of Aaron breaking Babe Ruth's all-time home run record, the award is officially sanctioned by Major League Baseball and has grown in prestige and importance every year.
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