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Three Cubs named National League Silver Slugger Finalists

7 months agoAndy Martinez

The Cubs offensive breakout was one of the biggest surprises of the 2023 season.

They received league-wide recognition for that Thursday morning. The Cubs had three players — Cody Bellinger, Dansby Swanson and Seiya Suzuki named Silver Slugger finalists. Bellinger is a finalist at both the outfield and utility positions, Suzuki is a finalist in the outfield and Swanson is a finalist at shortstop.

The trio carried the Cubs offense at various points throughout the season, helping them finish 6th in baseball in runs scored and 8th in OPS.

Bellinger, signed in the offseason on a “prove-it” deal, delivered as he slugged 26 home runs with 97 RBI, an .881 OPS and a 134 wRC+. The Cubs were at their best in 2023 when Bellinger was in the lineup. He was named player of the month in July. Bellinger is a free agent this offseason and one of the Cubs biggest questions this offseason will be whether he returns.

He will be up against Los Angeles’ Mookie Betts, San Diego’s Ha-Seong Kim and Cincinnati’s Spencer Steer for the utility Silver Slugger. Bellinger won a Silver Slugger award in 2019, his MVP year, in Los Angeles.

Suzuki posted an .842 OPS with 20 home runs. He went on an offensive tear after sitting for a pair of games in August, slashing .356/.414/.672/187 wRC+ with 11 home runs and 37 RBI over the last nearly two months of the season. His end of season has the Cubs in a comfortable position at right field.

Suzuki and Bellinger are finalists for the NL outfielder Silver Slugger award along with Atlanta’s Ronald Acuña Jr., Los Angeles’ Betts, Arizona’s Corbin Carroll, Philadelphia’s Kyle Schwarber and San Diego’s Juan Soto. Three players will win the award in the outfield.

Swanson, another offseason acquisition, delivered in his first year in Chicago. The 29-year-old posted a .744 OPS with 22 home runs, 80 RBI and a 104 wRC+. It was the third straight season that Swanson has had over 20 home runs. He was a steady presence in the middle of the Cubs’ lineup this season. Swanson is up against Xander Bogaerts (San Diego), Francisco Lindor (New York) and Trea Turner (Philadelphia) for the award.

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