2012 Hank Aaron Award: Billy Butler nominated by Royals

Jeff Gross - Getty Images

The Royals' designated hitter is the team's nominee for the Hank Aaron Award, given to the top offensive player in each league.

The Kansas City Royals have nominated Billy Butler for the 2012 Hank Aaron Award, given to the top offensive player in each league.

Butler, who has played all of his career with the Royals, spent most of the 2012 season at designated hitter. In 161 games, Butler averaged .313 at the plate with a .510 slugging percentage and .882 OPS. Butler's 29 home runs were No. 16 in the American League, while he was sixth with 107 RBIs.

Each team submits one nominee for the award, which is given to the winners during the World Series. Hank Aaron personally selects each winner, with Tony Gwynn, Paul Molitor, Joe Morgan and Robin Yount lending their opinions and expertise, as well.

Butler is facing stiff competition, with Josh Hamilton (Texas), Derek Jeter (New York), Miguel Cabrera (Detroit) and Edwin Encarnacion (Toronto) also being nominated. Jeter is the only player nominated this year who has previously won the award, while Ryan Braun, Andrew McCutchen, Giancarlo Stanton and Cabrera are the only players who were nominated last season as well as in 2012.

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