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Freese is Cards' winner of Heart and Hustle Award

Freese is Cards' winner of Heart and Hustle Award

ST. LOUIS -- Third baseman David Freese has been named the winner of the Heart and Hustle Award for the Cardinals, which is handed out to a player from each of the 30 Major League clubs by the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association (MLBPAA).

Thirty committees are formed by the MLBPAA, comprised of alumni players with established relationships to each team. One player from each Major League team is chosen by the committees based on the passion, desire and work ethic demonstrated both on and off the field.

"I think when you're out on the field you want to play hard and do what you can," Freese said. "You don't strive for getting these awards because that's not what it's all about. But when you get recognized, you're very appreciative."

The award will be presented to Freese by alumni Major Leaguer John Mabry, who spent eight of his 14 years in the big leagues with St. Louis and now serves as the Cardinals' assistant hitting coach.

"The way he went about it, being successful but his work ethic and being a good teammate, that's what people remember," Freese said of Mabry.

Freese was named to his first All-Star team this season after winning the National League Final Vote. The 2011 World Series MVP entered Wednesday batting .306 with 56 RBIs and was hitting .409 since June 21.

As the season draws to a close, fans, all alumni and active players will vote to select the final winner from the 30 team winners. The previous overall winners are Craig Biggio (2006, 2007), Grady Sizemore (2008), Albert Pujols (2009), Roy Halladay (2010), and Torii Hunter (2011).

The final winner will be announced Tuesday, Nov. 13, at the 13th annual Legends for Youth Dinner in New York City.