Two players in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization were awarded Sunday for their 2014 efforts.
Infielder Jake Lamb was named the organizational player of the year, while right-hander Aaron Blair was named the pitcher of the year, as announced by Diamondbacks director of player development Mike Bell.
Lamb, 23, was called up to the Majors in early August, and he made 38 appearances with the D-backs, hitting four doubles, four home runs and 11 RBI with a .230 average in 126 at-bats. The highlight of his time with the Big League club was his first career grand slam, which propelled Arizona to a come-from-behind win over Colorado on Aug. 29.
Before he reached the Majors, he hit .327 with 39 doubles, 15 home runs and 84 RBI in 108 games this season between Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Reno. The 6-foot-3 slugger also started at third base for the South Division in the midseason Southern League All-Star Game.
“Jake had a tremendous year, as the numbers will show,” said Bell. “However, the numbers will not show how he accumulated them. Jake continually came up with the big hit or big play in key games in Mobile, as well as his brief stint in Reno.”
— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) September 28, 2014
The 22-year-old Blair combined to go 9-5 with a 3.56 ERA in 154.1 innings pitched over 27 starts between Single-A South Bend, Single-A Advanced Visalia and Double-A Mobile. Blair struck out a whopping 171 batters on the year — tied for second-most among all Minor League pitchers. The right-hander also recorded just one loss in his last 16 starts of the year.
“Aaron was in the top five of many key pitching categories in our Minor League system, including strikeouts,” said Bell. “Aaron has moved across four levels in just over a year, and he has been outstanding at each stop. He helped all three teams he played for this year reach the playoffs. He improved as the year went on and posted his most impressive numbers in Mobile, the most advanced level he has reached.”