Morning Marquee: Cubs’ Kris Bryant named N.L. Rookie of the Year


With the World Series officially underway later on this evening, it’s that time of the year when the league issues out yearly honors for players and managers who stood out from the crowd.

Before we find out if Jake Arrieta will be named the N.L. Cy Young winner, Chicago Cubs rookie slugger Kris Bryant was named the N.L. Rookie of the Year by his peers. Bryant became the first Cubs player to win this honor since former catcher Geovany Soto received the nod back in 2008.

Soto’s club that season clinched the N.L. Central but fell victim to a sweep during the NLDS against the Los Angeles Dodgers and were unable to make the postseason until this year.

During his R.O.Y. campaign, Bryant set a rookie franchise record with 26 home runs and 99 RBI – surpassing legendary Cub, Billy Williams who set the original mark back in 1961. So as of right now, Kris is officially the greatest Cubs rookie to ever put on the uniform.

Despite eclipsing Williams’s previous record, he did, however, strikeout 199 times, another franchise record as well. The entire club as a unit led the league in strikeouts — something that skipper Joe Maddon would like to change next season.

While he thrived in the batter’s box when playing at Wrigley Field, Bryant’s bat did very little damage when the Cubs were on the road. In 292 at-bats, he struck out 110 times, swatted five homers, 40 RBI, and 71 hits while hitting .243/.333/.360.

His first big league homer came against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park and one of his biggest bombs of the year nearly cleared the video board out in left field.

In my opinion, Bryant’s breakout game came on the 4th of July with the Miami Marlins in town. Not only did he homer once in the first inning, he followed it up with a grand slam on a 3-1 count in his very next at-bat during the home half of the second.

When he’s in the zone and not swinging freely, Chicago’s 23-year-old slugger puts together some of the best at-bats you’ll ever witness in this game that we love.

And now that he’s got the Rookie of the Year under his belt, it’s time for him to compete with first baseman Anthony Rizzo for N.L. MVP honors starting next season and beyond.

Here’s more from Cubbies Crib:

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Chicago Cubs: Kris Bryant wins Sporting News Rookie of the Year

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