MINNEAPOLIS: For the second time this season, Shin-Soo Choo has been named American League Player of the Week.
In six games through Sunday, Choo batted .500 (10-for-20) with four home runs, 11 RBI, seven runs and two steals. He compiled a .615 on-base percentage with the help of five walks. He also posted a 1.150 slugging percentage.
On Friday night at Kansas City, Choo hit three home runs for the first time in his career. The barrage included a grand slam and seven RBI.
His big week pushed his home run total to 20, his stolen base total to 20 and his RBI total to 82. He is the first Asian player ever to hit 20 home runs and steal 20 bases in a season. He is one of two players -- Hanley Ramirez is the other -- to reach those milestones the past two years. Choo is one of six major leaguers this season to hit 20 homers and steal 20 bases.
Choo has had a more difficult task at the plate this year. Because of injuries to Grady Sizemore and Asdrubal Cabrera plus the failure of Travis Hafner to fully bounce back from shoulder problems, there has been nobody to protect Choo in the lineup, and pitchers often pitch around him.