Tonight (8:00 PM ET), and for the seventh consecutive year, the game’s best of the best as chosen by the Players will be honored exclusively on MLB Network when it broadcasts the 2017 Players Choice Awards, presented by MLB The Show. Now in its 26th year, the Players Choice Awards annually honor the outstanding player, rookie, pitcher and comeback player in each league, as well as an overall Player of the Year and Marvin Miller Man of the Year awards, which are selected by players in both leagues.
The Players Choice Awards benefit the Major League Baseball Players Trust, the collective charity created and administered by the players themselves. Players Choice Award winners in all categories will designate charities to receive grants totaling $260,000.
The three finalists for the Awards’ top honor, Player of the Year, are José Altuve of the Houston Astros, Nolan Arenado of the Colorado Rockies and Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins.
One combined for 120 home runs and 343 RBIs. One led the major leagues in home runs, another played a crucial role in the Astros’ first World Series title and the third finalist became the first third baseman ever to have three straight seasons of at least 35 home runs and 130 RBIs.
The winner of the 2017 Player of the Year will receive a $50,000 grant from the Players Trust for the charity of their choice.
Altuve, 27, is looking to become the first back-to-back winner of the award since Miguel Cabrera in 2012 and ‘13. He led the majors with an 8.3 WAR and a .346 batting average, while totaling 112 runs scored, 24 home runs, 81 RBIs and 32 stolen bases in 153 games this season. He put together the first back-to-back 20-home run, 30-stolen base seasons in the majors since Carlos Gomez in 2013-14. The second baseman helped the Astros to the franchise’s first World Series title, and hit .310 with seven home runs and 14 RBIs in 18 postseason games. Altuve has four straight seasons of 200-plus hits, the first player to do so since Ichiro Suzuki’s 10 straight seasons from 2001-2010 and Michael Young’s four straight from 2004-2007. Altuve started at second base for the American League at the All-Star Game, marking his fourth straight All-Star appearance.
Arenado, 26, hit .309 with 100 runs scored, a league-leading 43 doubles, 37 home runs and 130 RBIs in 159 games. The Rockies’ third baseman has only missed 10 games combined over the past three seasons, one of only four players to miss just 10-or-fewer games. Arenado has put together three straight seasons of 130-plus RBIs. Since 2000, only one other player has accomplished the offensive accomplishment – Ryan Howard from 2006-09. A clutch player at the beginning and end of games, Arenado hit a major-league best .413 (57 for 138) in the first inning, while leading the majors with 22 game-winning RBIs. Arenado started at third for the NL at the All-Star Game, his third straight appearance as an NL All-Star.
Stanton, 28, led the majors with 59 home runs and 132 RBIs, while setting Marlins’ franchise marks in both categories, adding 123 runs scored and an imposing .281/.376/.631 slash line. Stanton totaled one of the most prolific offensive months in baseball history this August when he hit 18 home runs with 37 RBIs in 29 games. It was the second-most home runs in a month ever, behind Sammy Sosa’s 20 blasts in June 1998. Stanton was named to his fourth All-Star Game and started for the NL at designated hitter.
For the third straight year, the Always Game Award, presented by Majestic Athletic, will be presented in tandem with the Players Choice Awards. This award recognizes the player that constantly exhibits grit, tenacity, perseverance and hustle on and off the field; all for the benefit of his teammates and fans. José Altuve has won the award the previous two years. This year, Nolan Arenado of the Colorado Rockies, George Springer of the Houston Astros and Francisco Lindor of the Cleveland Indians are finalists.
Balloting for the 2017 Players Choice Awards, which are being presented by MLB The Show and sponsored by Majestic Athletic, was conducted in all Major League clubhouses on Sept. 19, under the supervision of accounting firm KPMG.
The Players Trust raises funds and attention for issues affecting the needy and promotes community involvement, and it has recognized the outstanding on-field and off-field performances of Players Choice Awards winners by contributing more than $4 million to charities around the world. For additional information, please visit www.PlayersTrust.org.
Click below to learn more about the 2017 Players Choice Awards’ finalists:
Click here for the list of all-time Players Choice Awards winners.