Wright leads Mets' trio of Aaron nominees
Castillo, Pagan also in the mix for prestigious annual award
Through the travails that have marked the Mets' 2009 season, All-Star third baseman David Wright, second baseman Luis Castillo and outfielder Angel Pagan have delivered some good news with their bats.While Wright recovers from his harrowing Aug. 15 beaning, he joins Castillo and Pagan in receiving special notice for their efforts. The trio has been chosen as the Mets' nominees for the Hank Aaron Award, baseball's most prestigious honor for offensive prowess. The Hank Aaron Award, presented by Sharp, is awarded annually to the best overall offensive performer in each league, with each club having three nominees. This is the seventh consecutive year that fans have had a voice in selecting the award winners.
Fans can vote through Sept. 15 to determine the club nominee, and then voting will be held Sept. 16-30 to select the winner in each league. The winners will be announced during the World Series.
Last year's winners were Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis and Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez. Originally introduced in 1999 to honor the 25th anniversary of Hank Aaron breaking Babe Ruth's all-time home run record, the Hank Aaron Award was the first major award to be introduced in 30 years.
Led by their unquestioned leader on and off the field, the Mets' candidates for the annual honor have weathered the storm of injuries and done what they can do.Wright, who suffered a concussion from being hit on the head by a pitch from the Giants' Matt Cain, hasn't brought the same power numbers to the table he has in years past, but he still has managed to hit more than 30 doubles and better than .300. He also was headed for his second 30-steal season when he was injured. . Castillo leads the Majors with a .460 on-base percentage since July 5, and he's not just seeing pitches to get there. He also has a .370 average during that time, fifth in the Majors. Enjoying his best season with the Mets, the veteran is in line for his seventh career .300 season and is second only to Wright in runs scored with 65. Pagan has been a pleasant surprise in the depleted Mets outfield, emerging as the team's leadoff hitter and delivering some outstanding results, including the Mets' first leadoff home run of the season on Aug. 14. He already has a career high in hits, and he had his first career five-RBI game on Aug. 1.
John Schlegel is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.