Vlad Jr., Bell earn Player of Week honors
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. finally started crushing home runs, and his big week earned him the first Player of the Week Award presented by W.B. Mason of his young career. He also becomes the Blue Jays' youngest POTW Award winner, breaking the record held by Junior Felix.
Vlad Jr. was named American League Player of the Week on Monday, while the Pirates' Josh Bell took home National League Player of the Week honors after continuing his own power surge.
Maybe MLB's most heralded prospect, Guerrero went homerless in his first 13 big league games, but that all changed last week. The 20-year-old son of Hall of Famer Vladimir Guerrero mashed four homers for the Blue Jays -- the first two of his career on Tuesday, another on Friday and a fourth on Sunday.
Vlad Jr. hit .333 with a 1.321 OPS for the week. His four homers tied for the most in the AL last week, and his nine RBIs were tied for second. When he hit his first home runs, at 20 years, 59 days old, he became the Blue Jays' youngest player to homer. Those two were monster shots -- the first one was hit 438 feet at 111.3 mph, and the second 451 feet at 113.7 mph.
Bell, meanwhile, also crushed four home runs during the week, tied for the most in the NL last week. The 26-year-old first baseman is having a breakout year for the Pirates and has 14 homers -- already two more than he had last season in 148 games -- trailing only Cody Bellinger and Christian Yelich for the NL lead.
Bell hit .407 with a 1.373 OPS for the week. His four big flies came via two multihomer games: Tuesday against the D-backs and Saturday against the Padres. Tuesday's homers were especially impressive -- the first traveled 446 feet, the second 460 feet.
Vlad Jr. joins his father in the ranks of Player of the Week Award winners -- Vlad Sr. was a 10-time Player of the Week in his career. Vlad Jr. is the Blue Jays' first winner since Kendrys Morales last August.
Bell is also a first-time Player of the Week Award winner, and the Pirates' first winner since Jameson Taillon last April.