Giants trio up for prestigous Aaron Award

Giants trio up for prestigous Aaron Award

CINCINNATI -- Pablo Sandoval didn't earn All-Star recognition, but now he has a chance at a different prize.

Sandoval is among the Giants' nominees for the prestigious Hank Aaron Award. San Francisco's third baseman has topped the club in most offensive categories through much of the season and has ranked among the league leaders in several departments.

The Hank Aaron Award, presented by Sharp, is awarded annually to the best overall offensive performer in each league, with each club having three nominees. This is the seventh consecutive year that fans have had a voice in selecting the award winners.

Fans can vote through Sept. 15 to determine the club nominee, and then voting will be held Sept. 16-30 to select the winner in each league. The winners will be announced during the World Series.

Last year's winners were Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis and Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez. Originally introduced in 1999 to honor the 25th anniversary of Hank Aaron breaking Babe Ruth's all-time home run record, the Hank Aaron Award was the first major award to be introduced in 30 years.

This won't be the first time Giants fans have a chance to support Sandoval. They backed him overwhelmingly in the 2009 All-Star Game Sprint Final Vote, which he narrowly lost to Philadelphia outfielder Shane Victorino.

Sandoval entered Wednesday batting .327, second in the National League, with 18 home runs and 70 RBIs. He also ranked among the league's top 10 in multiple-hit games, doubles, hits, total bases and slugging percentage.

The Giants' other Aaron Award nominees are Bengie Molina (.262, 15 home runs, 63 RBIs), who's among the NL's top offensive catchers, and center fielder Aaron Rowand (.272, 10 homers, 48 RBIs).

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.