Donaldson named Player of the Year

Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson was named the Player of the Year at the Players Choice Awards on Monday night.

Donaldson was also named the American League Outstanding Player after leading the Blue Jays to the American League Champions Series, where they were beaten 4-2 by eventual champions, the Kansas City Royals. 

In his first season with the Blue Jays since being acquired from the Oakland Athletics, Donaldson finished with 41 home runs, 123 RBIs, 122 runs and 41 doubles.

The awards were given out based on the votes of all the candidates’ team-mates and peers. 

"For what it means and who votes on it, this is the award that means the most," Donaldson told the official MLB website. "It's very humbling. There are a lot of great players out there. Honestly, it's not something I looked to happen. Over the course of time, guys I play against know I'm out there to compete against them, and at the end of the day they respect that."

Donaldson beat Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper and Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Zack Greinke for the top prize. 

Harper and Greinke did not walk away empty-handed though. Harper won the National League Outstanding Player for leading the league in on-base percentage with .460, slugging percentage with .649 and on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS) with 1.109. He was also second in runs scored with 118. 

Harper was also named a Gold Glove finalist on Thursday and is in line to win the National League Most Valuable Player Award on November 19. 

"I'm definitely very fortunate to play this game, I love doing it, and to have the respect of the players, it's an honor," Harper said. "I couldn't have done it without the guys in our clubhouse. It's been a great year, and a lot of fun."

Greinke meanwhile received the National League Outstanding Pitcher award for recording a league-low 1.66 ERA and 0.84 walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP). He also struck out 200 batters in 222 2/3 innings.

In the American Leaguem Houston Astros pitcher Dallas Keuchel was named Outstanding Pitcher for maintaining a 2.48 ERA to go along with 216 strikeouts in an American League-high 232 innings. In addition, Keuchel etched his name in Astros history by going 15-0 at Minute Maid Park during the regular season.

"I definitely didn't expect to get this call," Keuchel said. "Just being in the category meant a lot to me. To be respected by your peers…you couldn't ask for anything more."

Baltimore Orioles center fielder Adam Jones was named the Marvin Miller Man of the Year award for being an inspiration both on and off the field. During the Baltimore protests following the death of Freddie Gray, an African-American resident, while in police custody, Jones organised a clinic for inner-city youth. 

"I'm more than humbled by the Players Association," Jones said. "An award like this isn't something you go out to win. This shows we're human outside of the game, and we try to impact where we can."

2015 Players Choice Award winners:

Either league:
Player of the Year: Josh Donaldson (Blue Jays)
Marvin Miller Man of the Year: Adam Jones (Orioles)
Majestic Athletic Always Game Award: Jose Altuve (Astros)

American League:
Outstanding Player: Josh Donaldson (Blue Jays)
Outstanding Pitcher: Dallas Keuchel (Astros)
Outstanding Rookie: Carlos Correa (Astros)
Comeback Player: Prince Fielder (Rangers)

National League:
Outstanding Player: Bryce Harper (Nationals)
Outstanding Pitcher: Zack Greinke (Dodgers)
Outstanding Rookie: Kris Bryant (Cubs)
Comeback Player: Matt Harvey (Mets)

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