Judge, Bellinger unanimous picks for top rookies
The verdict was a unanimous one as New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge was named the 2017 American League Rookie of the Year on Monday.
Meanwhile, Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger was named the unanimous winner of the National League Rookie of the Year award, beating finalists Josh Bell of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Paul DeJong of the St. Louis Cardinals.
Judge received all 30 first-place votes in the voting conducted by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. Boston Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi and Baltimore Orioles outfielder Trey Mancini finished second and third, respectively.
After winning a spring training competition with Aaron Hicks to earn the starting spot in right field, the 25-year-old Judge found himself at the top of the AL in homers with a rookie record 52. runs (128), walks (127) and, unfortunately for him, strikeouts (208). His 114 RBIs were second best in the AL.
Judge joins Derek Jeter (1996), Dave Righetti (1981), Thurman Munson (1970) and Tony Kubek (1957) as other notable Yankees to win the award.
The 6-foot-7 Judge is also a finalist for the AL MVP award, which will be announced on Thursday night.
Bellinger winning the NL award gives the Dodgers a record 18th Rookie of the Year winner. Bellinger is also the second straight Dodgers player to win Rookie of the Year. Shortstop Corey Seager did so last year.
The 21-year-old Bellinger broke the NL rookie record for home runs with 39 and finished second in the league behind only Giancarlo Stanton in homers. Bellinger led the Dodgers in RBIs (97) and runs (87).
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