Desmond, Rendon win Silver Slugger Awards
Shortstop earns honor for third straight season; third baseman collects his first
WASHINGTON -- Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond and third baseman Anthony Rendon were the recipients of the 2014 National League Silver Slugger Award at their positions Thursday.
Rendon is a first-time winner of the award, while Desmond joins Barry Larkin as the only shortstops in National League history to win three in a row.
"I'm really proud of them," Nationals manager Matt Williams said. "I'm really proud of their dedication to getting out there and playing every day for our club."
Both Desmond and Rendon had solid seasons. The longest-tenured member of the Nationals, Desmond got off to a slow start because of the flu, but he made up for it and was among the team leaders in homers (24) and RBIs (91). He has had three straight seasons of 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases.
"He continued to produce," Williams said. "Offensively, three years in a row he has been named the Silver Slugger. It talks about his work ethic. He had a great season, a fantastic season."
Rendon performed like the club's Most Valuable Player in his first full season with the Nationals, hitting .287 with 21 home runs and 83 RBIs. Not only has he done the job offensively, but he plays solid defense at third and second base.
"In his first full season, he took a huge step. He established himself as one of the best players on our team and a formidable player in our league," Williams said. "He had a fantastic season."
Although he was one of the team's best players, what impresses bench coach Randy Knorr is Rendon's demeanor. No one can tell if Rendon is in a slump or on a hitting streak.
"It's unbelievable," Knorr said. "For a young kid like that, the way he goes about his business, it's incredible. He never gets excited, he is always laughing. He is smiling, he is laughing. He has a good time, he has the ability -- at a young age -- to get past at-bats."