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Outfielder Denorfia honored for heart, hustle

SAN DIEGO -- Padres outfielder Chris Denorfia took home the Heart and Hustle Award on Friday, given by the MLB Players Alumni Association to one player from each team who "demonstrates a passion for the game of baseball and best embodies the values, spirit, and tradition of the game."

Denorfia received the award before Friday's game against the Rockies, and it was presented to him by former Padres great Randy Jones.

"I just try and give everything I've got, every day," Denorfia said. "That's my mindset. I try to play the way we all played when we were kids."

Major League Baseball's overall winner of the award will be announced on Nov. 19 at the Legends for Youth Dinner in New York. Past winners include Mike Trout, Torii Hunter, Roy Halladay and Albert Pujols.

"When you say heart and hustle, there are a couple guys that come to mind, but Deno is right there with them," Padres manager Bud Black said. "Every day that he comes to the ballpark, he comes in fresh. ... People around the league -- other managers, coaches, players -- have a great deal of respect for Deno."

Denorfia showed heart and hustle in Friday's 4-3 win over the Rockies, as he scored from first on a groundout and throwing error, diving into third base and home plate with a beautiful slide to tie the game in the sixth inning. He also tripled in the first inning -- his first of the season.

He is hitting .273 with nine homers and 43 RBIs.

AJ Cassavell is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell.
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