KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Major League Baseball announced Monday that Andrew Benintendi has been named American League Player of the Week for the period of Sept. 6-12. During that time, the Royals’ outfielder batted .500 (14-for-28) with three doubles, three homers and led all Major League players in hits and RBI (14).
This marks Benintendi’s first AL Player of the Week Award, while it’s the second by a Royal in the last three weeks, as Salvador Perez received the honor for the period of Aug. 23-29. It’s the first time KC has had multiple AL Player of the Week winners since 2016, when Kendrys Morales was honored twice.
Benintendi’s 14 RBI last week matched the franchise record for RBI on a road trip of seven games or fewer, tying Jeff King on a seven-game trip in 1997 and Morales in six games in 2016. His week included four go-ahead RBI as well as two game winners. He recorded RBI in six of the seven games on the trip, which included matching a season high with five RBI in Baltimore last Wednesday and again last Friday in Minnesota. The left-handed hitter also recorded five games with multiple hits, which included a season-high four knocks and a pair of home runs – his second multi-homer game of the season and fifth of his career – last Friday at Target Field.
A week ago today, Benintendi drove in the winning run with a single in the eighth inning in Baltimore and preserved the lead with a catch in left-center in the ninth, taking a potential game-tying home run away from Anthony Santander. On Wednesday in Baltimore, he drove in five of KC’s eight runs, which included a three-run homer in the ninth inning. Last Friday in Minneapolis, he hit another three-run blast to give the Royals a first-inning lead and then clubbed a two-run shot to start the 11th in a 6-4 triumph, marking his second career go-ahead HR in extra innings. It was also his second game with four or more hits and five or more RBI, previously doing so with five hits and six RBI on July 4, 2017 at Texas (with Boston). He capped the week with two hits and an RBI in both Saturday and Sunday’s contests against the Twins.
Along with his Major League highs in hits and RBI last week, Benintendi ranked second among American League players (min. 30 PA) in on-base percentage (.516), slugging pct. (.929) and OPS (1.445), while ranking tied for third in total bases (26). He led the Royals to a second-straight winning road trip, going 4-3.