Davis honored as AL Player of the Month
ANAHEIM -- Orioles first baseman Chris Davis, who started the season on a groundbreaking tear, was voted the Budweiser Presents American League Player of the Month for April, announced on Thursday.
"It's an honor," said Davis, who became the first Oriole to win since Melvin Mora in August 2008. "I think it puts Baltimore back on the map. Obviously, it's an individual award, but I think the team playing well really helps. I think it shows consistency more than anything. Just having that consistent approach at the plate. Some of that is just maturing as a person, maturing as a player."
Davis finished April tied for the league lead with nine home runs and 28 RBIs, while finishing first in slugging percentage (.728) and total bases (67). The 27-year-old also was fourth with a .348 batting average and fifth with a .442 on-base percentage.
"I'm really proud of him," manager Buck Showalter said. "To think about the competition, it's pretty impressive. So, he's very deserving."
Davis beat out the likes of reigning AL Most Valuable Player Miguel Cabrera (.363, four home runs, 28 RBIs) and Indians catcher Carlos Santana (.389, five home runs, .476 OBP), who also received votes.
Davis started the season 9-for-15 with three doubles, four home runs and a Major League-record 16 RBIs over his first four games. He became the fourth player in history to smack homers in each of the season's first four contests, joining Willie Mays (1971), Mark McGwire (1998) and Nelson Cruz (2011).
Davis earned AL Player of the Week honors for April 1-7, after splitting the award with Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander in the final week of the 2012 season. That made him the first Orioles player to take home consecutive weekly honors since Eddie Murray in 1981.
"It's a body of work, and I know a lot of it is based on the offense, but I've been impressed by the way he's played first base and the walks [he's drawn]," Showalter said.
"Chris has such range with the bat that if you go back and take a look at some of his extra-base hits, you'll see a lot of pitches that weren't strikes, and so it's always so tough. He's trying to be selective and trying to be aggressive at the same time. Another thing I'm proud of is the way he's handled his success. He's a humble young man and he's been on both sides of the fence. I think that bodes well for him in terms of handing successes and some tough times, too."