Even with the bitter taste of their September collapse still in their mouth, three Atlanta Braves have been recognized in the inaugural MLB.com awards. Already having won awards for their 2011 seasons, Brian McCann and Craig Kimbrel were named the team's Player of the Year and Breakout Player of the Year, while Tim Hudson was named the Braves' Pitcher of the Year.
McCann was already won his fifth Silver Slugger last week, a Braves record, and became the sixth catcher to win the award five times.
Although McCann hit .180 in 37 games after returning from the disabled list in August, he still managed to hit .270 and match his career high of 24 home runs. He also put together an OPS of .817 and was one of the few consistent spots in the Braves' lineup for the first four months.
Kimbrel and McCann were also selected to the Sporting News' National League All-Star team.
Kimbrel was also named the NL's Most Outstanding Rookie during last week's Players Choice Awards and is a front-runner for the NL Rookie of the Year, which will be announced by the Baseball Writers' Association of America on Nov. 14.
Kimbrel broke Neftali Feliz's Major League rookie record set in 2010 with 46 saves in 79 relief appearances, second only to Jonny Venters. He struck out 127 batters in 77 innings and held opponents to a .178 batting average. Although he blew three of his final five save opportunities, Kimbrel's 37 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings paved the way for his 2.10 ERA.
Hudson lived up to his bulldog reputation with a 16-10 record while leading the team with 210 innings pitched.
In a rotation that was missing Tommy Hanson and Jair Jurrjens down the stretch, Hudson recorded three of the Braves' wins in September.
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