Baltimore Orioles infielder Gunnar Henderson, a Selma native, has picked up two awards for stellar play this season.
Last week, the 22-year-old Henderson was named the American League utility player Silver Slugger Award winner. The award goes to the top hitter at each position.
On Monday, the left-handed hitter added another trophy to his mantle when he was named the Rookie of the Year for the American League, which goes to the top first-year player in each league.
The rookie hit 28 home runs, scored 100 runs, had 82 RBI, picked up 66 extra-base hits, 10 stolen bases and had a 125 OPS+ as he split his time between shortstop and third base. He also mashed the longest home run to land on Eutaw Street during a game in Camden Yards' 31-year history with a 462-foot home run.
Henderson starred at Morgan Academy in Selma, which retired his baseball number 2 in 2021. He signed to play at Auburn out of high school but was taken in the second round by the Orioles and turned professional instead of going the college route, a decision he said he prayed about.
The former Mr. Alabama Baseball even gave the Tigers a shoutout during an ESPN Sunday baseball broadcast this season when asked which school he preferred between Alabama and Auburn.
Gunnar Henderson with the Auburn shoutout and the Orioles are winning. This is great for the brand. pic.twitter.com/Agp0Ra1mr7— Jake Weese (@TheJakeWeese) July 31, 2023
Henderson is the first Orioles player to be named Rookie of the Year since Gregg Olson in 1989. Olson starred at Auburn University before having a great MLB career.
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