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Batting champ Cuddyer honored as Silver Slugger

Rockies outfielder earns first such award after career year at plate

DENVER -- Rockies outfielder Michael Cuddyer, who earned his first National League batting championship in 2013, earned his first Louisville Slugger Silver Slugger Award, it was announced on Wednesday night.

Cuddyer, 34, fashioned a career-best and club-record 27-game hitting streak and finished the season with a .331 batting average. He also finished fifth in the NL with a .919 OPS (on-base percentage plus slugging percentage).

In addition to batting average and OPS, Cuddyer set career-best marks for slugging percentage (.530) and on-base percentage (.389).

Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki was a Silver Slugger finalist, but the Nationals' Ian Desmond came away with the award. Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario also was a finalist for the award, which was won by the Cardinals' Yadier Molina.

Cuddyer's streak, from May 28 to June 30, was the second-longest in the Majors this season, following a 29-gamer by the Nationals' Denard Span. Cuddyer also reached base safely in 46 straight games, from April 23 to June 30.

An All-Star Game starter, Cuddyer finished with 20 home runs and 84 RBIs, plus 31 doubles, in a lineup that at times missed leadoff man Dexter Fowler, No. 3 hitter Carlos Gonzalez and cleanup man Tulowitzki. It was Cuddyer's fifth 30-plus-doubles year and his fourth season with at least 20 homers. Cuddyer also finished strong, hitting .385 in September to win the batting title by 10 points over the Braves' Chris Johnson.

September wasn't even Cuddyer's best month. He hit .396 in May over 14 games, while missing 14 contests that month with a rib injury.

The Reds' Jay Bruce and the Pirates' Andrew McCutchen won the other two outfield Silver Sluggers for the NL.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb.
Read More: Colorado Rockies, Michael Cuddyer