SPORTS

Justin Morneau receives Tip O'Neill Award as top Canadian for third time

04/16/2015 08:05 EDT | Updated 07/02/2015 02:00 EDT
ST. MARYS ONTARIO, - Justin Morneau has another accolade to add to his collection.

The Colorado Rockies first baseman from New Westminster, B.C., will receive the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame's Tip O'Neill Award for the third time in his career.

The award is given annually to a Canadian player who has excelled in individual achievement and team contribution. The Hall also takes into account a candidate's on-field performance, contributions to their team, community, charitable endeavours and fan voting support.

Morneau, 33, won the National League batting title last season for the first time by hitting .319 with Colorado.

"With the high quality of Canadian baseball and softball players that now hail from Canada, it is truly one of the great honours of my career," said Morneau. "To be mentioned amongst the great Canadian players in 2014, and to ultimately win the Tip O'Neill Award is very special. When you look at the list of past winners, it is truly humbling to be listed with them again."

He is the fourth player to win the Tip O'Neill Award three times. Larry Walker of Maple Ridge, B.C. has won the award nine times, Joey Votto of Etobicoke, Ont., is a four-time winner and Jason Bay of Trail, B.C. is also a three-time recipient. Votto had won the award the past two years.

Morneau was a Gold Glove finalist and NL comeback player of the year nominee last season. He also won the American League most valuable player award in 2006.

"Justin Morneau represents everything you want in an ambassador for the game of baseball and for the sport in our country," said Scott Crawford, the Hall's director of operations. "Yes, he's a batting champion and a Gold Glove finalist on the field, but he's also a passionate supporter of the national program and he quietly and selflessly supports a long list of charities."

Morneau will receive the award in a pre-game ceremony on Monday at Coors Field in Colorado when the Rockies take on the San Diego Padres.

Montreal's Russell Martin, Dalton Pompey of Mississauga, Ont., and James Paxton of Ladner, B.C. also got support for the award. Canadian women's MVP Stephanie Savoie of La Pocatiere, Que., and Jamie Romak of London, Ont. were also considered.

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