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Zimmerman wins Silver Slugger

Nov 11, 2010, 11:30 PM EDT

Read an updated version with quotes from Zimmerman on CSNwashington.com

Managers and coaches didn’t believe Ryan Zimmerman was the National League’s best defensive third baseman this season, but they did believe he was the NL’s best offensive player at the hot corner.

Zimmerman won the Silver Slugger award this evening, the second straight year the Nationals’ star has been honored as his position’s best offensive performer.

Zimmerman set career highs in batting average (.307), on-base percentage (.388) and OPS (.899) while also hitting 25 homers with 85 RBI. Those power numbers were down from his 2009 totals of 33 homers and 106 RBI, but that was in part because the 26-year-old missed 20 games with a variety of minor injuries.

Zimmerman beat out a deep class of fellow NL third basemen including David Wright, Mark Reynolds, Scott Rolen and Casey McGehee.

This award comes one day after Zimmerman (generally regarded as the best defensive third baseman in the NL) lost out to Rolen for the Gold Glove award, also voted on by the league’s managers and coaches.

  1. JaneB - Nov 11, 2010 at 11:34 PM

    Hurrah!Surely we want to keep zim happy…and he's clear how.

  2. natsfan1a - Nov 12, 2010 at 12:07 AM

    Congrats to the Z-Man! However, I felt he missed an opportunity when he called in to MLB Network after the announcement. I thought maybe he'd note that he'd been seeing more good pitches what with the Big Guy being in the lineup behind him and all. :-)

  3. Anonymous8 - Nov 12, 2010 at 12:42 AM

    natsfan1a – I think last year Zim gave thumbs up to Mr. Dunn.I am just thankful after yesterday's snub on the Gold that Zim got the Silver today.With his rib injury taking away his power for several weeks before he stopped playing the end of September, Zim's numbers were great!

  4. sec3 - Nov 12, 2010 at 1:57 AM

    But if they sign Dunn to keep Zimm happy, but then continue to lose, doesn't he go away anyhow?

  5. section trey - Nov 12, 2010 at 2:04 AM

    1A: from NJ: As much as this award was mine," Zimmerman said in a conference call with reporters following the announcement, "having those guys behind me [was] important. Having Adam come back needs to be a big priority for our team — for everyone, but it obviously helps me out a lot."

  6. natsfan1a - Nov 12, 2010 at 3:13 AM

    Thanks, Anon@7:42 and trey. I didn't recall Zimm's comments from last year (though I do recall his awards haul).

  7. Traveler8 - Nov 12, 2010 at 1:55 PM

    Mark, while I don't follow any other teams closely enough to compare, it seems to me that it is unusual that one player is so publicly endorsing re-signing another player. Is there much precedent for this sort of thing?

  8. JD - Nov 12, 2010 at 2:16 PM

    I think that everyone is making too much of Zim's endorsement of Dunn. If this is what drives the decision process then we are doomed to be a losing ream for years to come. Fortunately; I don't think Rizzo is too concerned about this aspect; this is strictly a professional baseball decision and last I heard Ryan Zimmerman did not have a job in that capacity for the Nationals. I understand that they are good friends and would love to continue playing together but whether or not Dunn is retained by the Nationals should depend only on whether spending the money on him vs. on others makes us a better team.

  9. Mark Zuckerman - Nov 12, 2010 at 2:26 PM

    To answer Traveler8's question, I don't think it's all that unusual for one teammate to endorse the re-signing of another. Zimmerman has been pretty outspoken when it comes to the Nats keeping Dunn, but it should be noted that he only talks about this when the subject is raised by a reporter.That was the case during the season, that was the case the other night at the uniform unveiling and that was the case last night on his Silver Slugger conference call. I don't think it's accurate at all to say he went out of his way to use his winning the award as a platform to lobby the Nats to re-sign Dunn. He was simply asked how much Dunn's presence behind him in the lineup has helped him become a better hitter, and he responded with praise for Dunn and mentioned again how important he thinks it is for the Nats to keep him.

  10. Traveler8 - Nov 12, 2010 at 2:43 PM

    Thanks, Mark. For all the discussion this has taken, it seemed that Zim had particularly used this opportunity as a platform to endorse Dunn, but what seems to have actually happened is that the comment was incidental and perhaps taken too seriously by all us hot-stovers.

  11. natsfan1a - Nov 12, 2010 at 3:01 PM

    Speaking only for myself (the only person for whom I am qualified to do so), my comment of yesterday was light-hearted, as indicated by the smiley. As previously noted, I have no insights into the negotiation process, and I'm content to wait and see what develops (which is a good thing, as nothing I say or do will affect the outcome ;-)). I *was* happy to see Zimm win the Silver Slugger, though.

  12. natsfan1a - Nov 12, 2010 at 3:03 PM

    That said, I do appreciate the background information from Mark. It's always helpful to have context for quotes, particularly on the Interwebz.

  13. Steve M. - Nov 12, 2010 at 3:45 PM

    http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/Detroit-Tigers-set-sights-on-free-agent-catcher-Victor-MartinezI heard this on the news this morning that the Detroit Tigers now see Victor Martinez as their #1 off-season priority ahead of Adam Dunn.If I look at the predictions for Dunn's servies the 3 top teams for Dunn's are the Nats, Cubs and Tigers.The Cubs owners say they would have to trade away Fukodome to afford Dunn and the Tigers are going after Victor Martinez and the Nationals have the money ready to spend.I am hoping Dunn is hearing the same stuff and takes Rizzo's offer! That would be a nice present to Ryan Zimmerman!

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