Twins announce 2021 Diamond Awards recipients; Polanco wins ‘Most Valuable Twin’ award

The Minnesota Twins announced the recipients of the Diamond Awards, their annual awards for the 2021 season voted on by the Twin Cities Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of American and the Twins Community Fund Board of Directors.

Infielder Jorge Polanco is the unanimous winner of the "Most Valuable Twin" award, as well as the winner of the Charles O. Johnson award for "Most Improved Twin."

Polanco, currently the longest-tenured Twin on the roster, had a career year this past season. He hit .269 with 35 doubles, two triples, 33 home runs, 98 RBI, 45 walks, 11 stolen bases, 97 runs scored, a .503 slugging percentage and an .826 OPS in a team-leading 152 games played. He led the club in a majority of offensive categories, while also setting single-season career highs in slugging percentage, home runs and RBI. Among other MLB switch-hitting players, he ranked second in home runs and third in RBI, both top single-season marks by a switch hitter in Twins history.

In addition to his achievements, Polanco also became the fifth player in Twins history with 30-plus doubles, 30-plus home runs, 90-plus RBI and 10-plus stolen bases in a season. He joins Brian Dozier, Gary Gaeti, Kirby Puckett and Tony Oliva on that list.

Other award recipients are as follows:

  • Nelson Cruz – Bob Allison award, given to the player who exemplifies determination, hustle, tenacity, competitive spirit and leadership on and off the field.
  • José Berrios – Joseph W. Haynes award, given to the "Twins Pitcher of the Year."
  • Bailey Ober – Bill Boni award, given to the "Twins’ Most Outstanding Rookie."
  • Taylor Rogers – "Carl R. Pohlad Outstanding Community Service" award.
  • Andrelton Simmons – Jim Kaat award, "Twins Defensive Player of the Year."
  • Josh Donaldson – Mike Augustin "Media Good Guy" award.
  • Jared Walsh – Dick Siebert award, given to the "Upper Midwest Player of the Year."

To see a detailed list on this year’s award recipients, click here.