Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Shogo Akiyama named July 2017 Pacific League hitting MVP

Shogo Akiyama was named the Pacific League hitting MVP for the month of July on Tuesday afternoon. In the previous month, he would hit .351, leading the league in hits.

"I surprised myself because I didn't expected this award," Akiyama said in an interview.

While the Lions spent June scrambling with Yuji Kaneko and Akiyama trading time in the leadoff spot, the latter would bat first for the entire month of July. Akiyama briefly spent time batting third in the lineup during interleague play.

In July, Akiyama had five modashos, 19 RBIs, two stolen bases and three home runs. At one point, he had an 11 game hitting streak from July 18-30.

When asked about one of his favorite games, Akiyama pointed to the modasho he had in Tokyo Dome against the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters on July 4, where he went 0-6 on the previous game.

There were plenty of candidates on the Lions who scored runs in July, including Hideto Asamura, Yuji Kaneko and Shuta Tonosaki, but Akiyama's high average was viewed the best of the bunch.

This is the first time Akiyama has won this award since June of 2015. It's the third time overall, where he also won this award for March/April of 2015.  This award became the 72nd time a Lions player became a monthly hitting MVP, the most among all of NPB.

Previously, Ken Togame was named Pacific League pitching MVP for June of this season.


Other Monthly MVPs:

P Tomoyuki Sugano (Giants): 4th time, 4-0, 29.0 IP, 0.31 ERA, 30 K

OF Masayuki Kuwahara (Baystars): 1st time, .389, 6 HR, 14 RBI, 2 SB

P Nao Higashihama (Hawks): 1st time, 3-0, 20.1 IP, 1.33 ERA, 13 K


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