Joey Votto wins Tip O'Neill Award

ST. MARYS, Ont. — The Globe and Mail

Joey Votto picked up another accolade Friday for his outstanding season with the Cincinnati Reds.

The National League MVP was declared a landslide winner of the Tip O'Neill Award handed out by the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.

The trophy, named after the pre-modern era star from Woodstock, Ont., honours the top Canadian player in baseball.

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The first baseman from Toronto became just the third Canadian to be named MVP after batting .324, with 37 home runs, 113 RBIs and 106 runs scored in leading the Reds to the NL Central title.

Larry Walker, a nine-time Tip O'Neill winner, and Justin Morneau, a two-time winner, are the other Canadian MVPs.

"There are several very good Canadians and I'm very proud to be mentioned in any conversation that includes Walker and all of the current players, especially Justin," Votto said in a release. "Justin isn't only one of the best Canadians in the game, but one of the best players in the game, Canadian or not."

Votto also won the Hank Aaron Award as the NL's top hitter.

He received over 80 per cent of the vote in an Internet and Facebook poll taken by the Canadian hall. He's tentatively set to receive the honour April 30th in Cincinnati.

New York Mets outfielder Jason Bay of Trail, B.C., won his third Tip O'Neill Award last year.

Chicago Cubs right-hander Ryan Dempster of Gibsons, B.C., the 2000 Tip O'Neill winner, was second in the Hall's voting after racking up 15 wins and 208 strikeouts in 215 innings.

Rookie John Axford of Simcoe, Ont., finished third after collecting 24 saves with an earned-run average of 2.38 and 76 strikeouts in 58 innings for the Milwaukee Brewers.

Morneau finished fourth in the voting after batting .345 with 18 homers, 25 doubles and 56 RBIs in 81 games for the Minnesota Twins. A concussion sidelined the New Westminster, B.C., native for the second half of the season.

Twins reliever Jesse Crain, and national team MVP's Jamie Romak and Kate Psota, tied for fifth.

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