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2011 Silver Slugger Awards: Cubs' Aramis Ramirez Wins First

Major League Baseball announced the winners of this year's Silver Slugger awards on Wednesday, and Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez was among those awarded.

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For over ten years now, Aramis Ramirez has been one of the better offensive third basemen in the National League. He had never won a Silver Slugger award until now, though. On Wednesday, MLB announced the winners of this year's Silver Sluggers, awarded to the best hitter at each respective position in both leagues, and Ramirez was among those named.

Ramirez, 33, finished this season with a .306/.361/.510 line in 149 games. It was a major improvement from 2010, when an unusually high strikeout rate coupled with some poor luck led to his worst performance in eight years. He actually led all NL third basemen in wRAA (weighted runs above average) this season, further cementing his status as the top-hitting third baseman in the NL this season.

He managed to beat out San Francisco's Pablo Sandoval for the award. Sandoval actually hit better than Ramirez on a rate basis, but didn't play nearly as much so he wasn't able to accumulate as much value.

Here are the complete NL winners:

C: Brian McCann, Atlanta Braves
1B: Prince Fielder, Milwaukee Brewers
2B: Brandon Phillips, Cincinnati Reds
3B: Aramis Ramirez, Chicago Cubs
SS: Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies
LF: Ryan Braun, Milwaukee Brewers
CF: Matt Kemp, Los Angeles Dodgers
RF: Justin Upton, Arizona Diamondbacks
P: Daniel Hudson, Arizona Diamondbacks

For more on the Cubs, check out Bleed Cubbie Blue, SB Nation's Chicago Cubs blog.