San Francisco Giants: Handing Out Mid-Season Award

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Rookie of the Year: Matt Duffy

Jun 28, 2015; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants third baseman Matt Duffy (5) hits a double during the third inning against the Colorado Rockies at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants have gotten a lot of contributions from rookies this season. Chris Heston has jumped into the rotation and has excelled in his first real big league shot. Andrew Susac has been a strong performer behind the plate with Posey moving to first base to fill in with injuries lately. But Duffy’s contributions have been the biggest.

Like Joe Panik did with second base in 2014, Duffy has saved third base for the Giants, albeit on a lesser scale than Panik. After Pablo Sandoval‘s departure and Casey McGehee‘s failures, Duffy has been a breath of fresh air. He has outperformed expectations, and played so well that manager Bruce Bochy had no choice but to declare him the starting third baseman.

Duffy is hitting .294, and has played well enough to move up from the eighth spot into the third spot in the lineup. He has also shown surprising power for a man of his small stature, collecting 23 extra-base hits, including eight home runs.

If the MLB had a Most Improved Player award like the NBA does, Duffy could certainly stake a claim for that as well. His improvement as a defensive third baseman has been quick and noticeable. After starting the season a bit rocky defensively, Duffy has made great strides, looking more and more comfortable at the position every day.

Next: Comeback Player of the Year