Gunnar Henderson favored to earn AL rookie of year award

Published 6:00 am Tuesday, September 5, 2023

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Former Morgan Academy shortstop Gunnar Henderson is considered a betting favorite to win American League Rookie of the Year.

Henderson, 22, enters this week hitting .249 with a . 815 OPS plus 21 homers and 61 RBIs in his first full MLB season.

Henderson, the Baltimore Orioles’ second-round pick in the MLB Draft four years ago, told the Baltimore Sun his approach this season.

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“I’ve been seeing the ball well,” Henderson said. “It’s just getting in the mindset of telling yourself you’re going to swing and then when it’s a ball say ‘no.’ It’s harder to go from, ‘No, I’m not going to swing’ to ‘Oh, there it is, yes.’ Because then you’re late, fouling it off or completely missing. Just got to be in that mindset of getting your swing off and then if it’s a ball trusting yourself that you’re not going to swing at it.”

The Orioles are in a position to win the American League’s Eastern Division championship. 

Henderson is a big reason why the Orioles have a shot to win the AL Pennant.

Orioles manager Brandon Hyde told the Baltimore Sun how impressed he’s with Henderson, The Selma Times-Journal baseball player of the year in 2019.

“He just plays so hard. He’s so awesome,” Hyde said. “I just want to see him hit the base a little easier, honestly. But he’s so young and he wants to get there so bad and it’s a great problem to have, having him go too hard sometimes.”