By Andrew Green
The Chicago Cubs announced on Wednesday that Tennessee Smokies third baseman Kris Bryant has been named the club’s Minor League Player of the Month for the month of May.
The 22-year-old accumulated a .407 clip (44-108), adding 12 homers and 34 RBI in his 29 contests in May for the Smokies. Bryant led not just all Cubs farmhands, but all Minor Leaguers in batting average, home runs, total bases (87) and OPB (1.298), in addition to ranking second in RBI, on-base percentage (.492) and slugging percentage (.806), tied for second in runs (30) and tied for third in hits (44).
Bryant recorded 14 multi-hit contests during the month, including a pair of four-hit efforts and four three-hit games, and was also honored by the Southern League as Hitter of the Week twice for the time periods between May 5-12 and May 26-June 1. The second overall pick in the 2013 MLB Draft out of the University of San Diego was also named a Southern League All-Star Tuesday.
Baseball America’s eighth-best overall prospect in his 57 total games for Tennessee this season owns a .353 average (73-207), adding 19 homers and 51 RBI. The Nevada native paces the Southern League in nine separate categories, including all three Triple Crown statistics, and came into leading the Minor Leagues in total bases (145), in addition to third in roundtrippers.
It’s the second time Bryant has been honored with a monthly honor by the Cubs in his professional career after being recognized by Chicago as the team’s Minor League Player of the Month in August 2013. In addition, Bryant is the first Smokies player to be honored by the Cubs since right-hander Matt Loosen was named the club’s Pitcher of the Month in July 2013.