Clayton Kershaw has drawn plenty of attention for the season he had in 2014 and deservedly so. However, he wasn’t alone as a model of consistency for the Los Angeles Dodgers last season.
Though it wasn’t necessarily to the same level of dominance as Kershaw, Adrian Gonzalez quietly put together a strong season batting in the middle of the order. Yes, Gonzalez was once mired in a month-long slump, but he hit well before it and once he pulled himself out of it.
Gonzalez finished with a Major-League leading 116 RBIs and won his second career Silver Slugger Award, which was his first with the Dodgers. Gonzalez was also recognized for his defensive play as he picked up a Fielding Bible Award, Gold Glove and Wilson Defensive Award.
The first baseman’s list of honors grew internationally as he was also presented a top award in Mexico by their National Commission for Physical Culture and Sport. During a conference call to discuss the award, Gonzalez said he’s already working on preparing for 2015 after a short break, via Cary Osborne of Dodger Insider:
I really put a lot of hard work and effort during the season,” Gonzalez said. “Since the season has passed, I had three days of rest, and I started training again. I don’t like to rest. I’m not one of those people who sits on the couch for a month after the season is over. I continue working and preparing for the next year.”
Gonzalez came alive after the All-Star break as he hit .314 with a .561 slugging percentage and 56 RBIs. Since being traded to the Dodgers in 2012, it was Gonzalez’s most productive offensive season in Los Angeles as he had highs in home runs, slugging percentage and RBIs.
While the Dodgers lineup may look drastically different as Hanley Ramirez may not return and the team is reportedly shopping outfielders, Gonzalez figures to once again play an important role in 2015.