ATLANTA -- Blurred vision has burdened Brian McCann during the early portions of both of the past two seasons. But by the time these years have concluded, he has still been widely considered to be the National League's best offensive threat among catchers.
On Thursday night, McCann gained his fourth NL Silver Slugger Award, the winners of which were selected by votes cast by Major League managers and coaches. The 26-year-old catcher was the only Braves player to win this award this season.
Just five full seasons into his Major League career, McCann has already compiled an impressive list of accomplishments. The five-time All-Star joins Dale Murphy and Tom Glavine as the only players who have won four Silver Slugger Awards while playing for the Braves.
This marks the third straight season that McCann has won a Silver Slugger Award. Murphy (1982-85) is the only other member of the franchise to win the award for more than two consecutive seasons.
NL SILVER SLUGGER WINNERS
|C||Brian McCann, Braves||4|
|1B||Albert Pujols, Cardinals||6|
|2B||Dan Uggla, Marlins||1|
|3B||Ryan Zimmerman, Nationals||2|
|SS||Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies||1|
|OF||Ryan Braun, Brewers||3|
|OF||Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies||1|
|OF||Matt Holliday, Cardinals||4|
|P||Yovani Gallardo, Brewers||1|
Since 1980, the Silver Slugger Awards have been annually presented to the top offensive player at every position. McCann is the only Braves player to win this award since Andruw Jones in 2005.
Despite occasionally battling vision problems during this past season's first five weeks, McCann still ended up leading all NL catchers in homers (21) and RBIs (77). His .269 batting average and .828 OPS ranked third among the Senior Circuit backstops with at least 425 plate appearances.
McCann has positioned himself to be join some elite company. Only six catchers have won more than four Silver Slugger Awards -- Mike Piazza (10), Pudge Rodriguez (seven), Lance Parrish (six), Jorge Posada (five) and Gary Carter (five).
Dating back to the beginning of the 2006 season, McCann leads all Major League catchers in homers (106), RBIs (434) and doubles (167). His .290 batting average ranks third behind a pair of American League catchers -- Joe Mauer (.336) and Victor Martinez (.303).
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.