Billy Butler is 2012 DH of the Year (He was the only one eligible)

by Bill Chuck on December 4, 2012

Major League Baseball announced today that Billy Butler of the Kansas City Royals has been voted the winner of the 2012 Edgar Martinez Outstanding Designated Hitter Award.  Butler received 80 first-place votes out of 84 ballots cast to garner the honor for the first time in his six-year career.  He becomes the second Royal to be named the league’s top designated hitter, joining three-time winner Hal McRae who took home the award in 1976, 1980 and 1982 while playing for Kansas City.

Edwin Encarnacion finished second with 35 second-place votes after slugging a career-best 42 home runs and 110 RBI for the Toronto Blue Jays this past season.

Here are the players who were DH for at least 80% of their 2012 playing time

Butler was the only DH with the minimum 502 plate appearances to be eligible for the batting crown

Rk Player PA Tm G AB R H 2B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1 Billy Butler 679 KCR 161 614 72 192 32 29 107 54 111 .313 .373 .510 .882
2 David Ortiz 383 BOS 90 324 65 103 26 23 60 56 51 .318 .415 .611 1.026
3 Luke Scott 344 TBR 96 314 35 72 22 14 55 21 80 .229 .285 .439 .724
4 Travis Hafner 263 CLE 66 219 23 50 6 12 34 32 47 .228 .346 .438 .784
5 Jim Thome 186 TOT 58 163 17 41 7 8 25 22 61 .252 .344 .442 .786
6 Nick Johnson 102 BAL 38 87 9 18 4 4 11 11 26 .207 .324 .391 .714
7 Luis Jimenez 18 SEA 7 17 0 1 0 0 0 1 4 .059 .111 .059 .170
8 Brad Eldred 17 DET 5 16 1 3 1 0 1 1 6 .188 .235 .375 .610
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 12/4/2012.

Overall, Butler batted .313 (192-for-614) with 32 doubles, one triple, 29 home runs, 107 RBI and 72 runs scored in 161 games in 2012.

Here are Butler’s stats as a DH

Split G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
as DH 138 591 539 69 170 29 1 23 93 42 100 .315 .371 .501 .871
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/4/2012.

Here are Edwin Encarnacion’s DH stats

Split G PA AB R H 2B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
as DH 82 349 297 49 85 10 22 64 41 52 .286 .381 .542 .923
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/4/2012.

David Ortiz‘ DH stats

Split G PA AB R H 2B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
as DH 81 351 297 61 95 25 20 53 52 48 .320 .419 .606 1.025
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/4/2012.

 

Among qualifying designated hitters with a minimum of 100 at-bats at the position, the Butler finished first in games played (138), at-bats (538), runs scored (61), base hits (170), doubles (29), RBI (93), batting average (.315), on-base percentage (.371) and slugging percentage (.501).  In addition, Butler was second in homers (23) and stood third in walks (42).  The 26-year-old established career-bests in games, at-bats, hits, homers, RBI, slugging and total bases (313), leading his club in all three Triple Crown categories.  The righty-hitting Butler finished fifth in hits, sixth in RBI, was tied for seventh in total bases and was eighth in batting average among all A.L. hitters.

Billy also was named the Les Milgram Royals Player of the Year by the Kansas City Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) for the third time in his career (also 2009-10), joining George Brett, Amos Otis and Mike Sweeney as the only three-time winners of the honor.

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