Further, Cabrera became just the 10th different player to lead the league in batting, home runs and runs batted in in the same season, joining an elite list that includes Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams and Lou Gehrig. Cabrera’s numbers: .330 batting average, 44 home runs and 139 RBIs, tops in the American League in all categories.
“It was like, everybody said to me it was unbelievable,” Cabrera said. “They were excited to see this, enjoy this, be a part of something big, and winning, I feel better.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling,” he said. “I can’t describe the feeling right now.”
Cabrera’s achievement wasn’t assured until the Yankees pinch hit for Curtis Granderson in their 14-2 rout of the Boston Red Sox. Granderson had homered twice to reach 43 for the year, tied with the Texas Rangers’ Josh Hamilton and just one short of Cabrera
Cabrera went 0 for 2 in his last game of the regular season in Kansas CIty against the Royals before leaving in the fourth inning to a standing ovation. He finished the regular season hitting four points higher than Angels rookie Mike Trout, his toughest competition for AL MVP. Cabrera was the runaway leader in RBIs.
Here are other Triple Crown winners and their statistics for that year:
|F. Robinson, BAL||1966||49||122||.316|
|— The Associated Press|
“I am glad that he accomplished this while leading his team to the American League Central title,” Yastrzemski said in a statement, pointing out that his Boston Red Sox advanced all the way to the World Series when he won one of baseball’s most coveted titles.
The Tigers will have that chance when they open the postseason Saturday against Oakland.
“It was hard the last two days because everybody talked about it. I just had to focus, I had to go out there and do the job,” Cabrera said. “The hardest part was to go out there and focus and win games. I said, ‘If we win the division, everything would take care of itself.'”
Commissioner Bud Selig also offered his congratulations, calling the Triple Crown “a remarkable achievement that places him amongst an elite few in all of baseball history.”