Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Russell Martin is going to need a new mantle soon. Three days after winning the Gold Glove award for best defensive catcher in the National League, Martin has been awarded the Louisville Slugger Silver Slugger Award. The award is handed out yearly to the best offensive players at each position in their respective league.
Martin batted .293 with 19 homers, 87 RBIs, a .374 on-base percentage, .469 slugging percentage and 21 stolen bases. The second-year catcher led all National League catchers in every offensive category except batting average. Martin’s 21 steals set a Dodger record for catchers. The 24-year-old Canadian also started the All-Star Game for the National League.
The Silver Slugger Award recipients are voted on by Major League Baseball managers and coaches from both leagues. The last Dodger to win the award at catcher was Mike Piazza, in 1997.
In other Dodger news, former All-Star pitcher Chan Ho Park is on his way back to Los Angeles. Park, who pitched in the All-Star game for the Dodgers in 2001, was signed to a non-roster contract today, with an invitation to spring training. Park, 34, pitched one game for the New York Mets last season, while recovering from health issues that have hampered him since 2005.