A.J. Ellis celebrates after scoring on a third inning RBI double against… (Justin K. Aller / Getty Images )
SAN DIEGO -- Catcher A.J. Ellis won the seventh annual Roy Campanella Award, which is given to the Dodgers player who best exemplifies the spirit and leadership of the late Hall of Fame catcher.
The award was voted on by Dodgers players and coaches. Ellis will be presented with the award on Saturday at Dodger Stadium by Campanella’s daughter, Joni Campanella Roan.
Ellis is 31 years old but in his first full season as a major leaguer.
Ellis ranks fourth in the major leagues with 125 games caught. His 1,097 innings behind the plate also rank fourth. His catchers’ earned-run average of 3.37 is the lowest in the majors among catchers will a minimum of 100 starts.
Where Ellis has surprised is in the batter’s box. Held back for years because of the widespread perception that he was a below-average hitter, Ellis is hitting .263 with 11 home runs and 44 runs batted in. Over the previous three seasons, Ellis hit a combined four home runs between triple A and the majors.
Ellis leads the Dodgers with a .365 on-base percentage and 62 walks. He sees an average of 4.43 pitches per plate appearance, the most in the majors.
Previous winners of the Campanella Award include Rafael Furcal (2006), Russell Martin (2007), James Loney (2008), Juan Pierre (2009), Jamey Carroll (2010) and Matt Kemp (2011).
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