Red Sox LF Ramirez wins ninth Silver Slugger award

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Boston left fielder Manny Ramirez won his
ninth Silver Slugger on Friday, while New York Yankees shortstop
Derek Jeter and New York Mets center fielder Carlos Beltran were
among 13 first-time winners.

Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano and Mets shortstop Jose Reyes also earned the honor, given to the top offensive performer
at each position, for the first time.

Ramirez, who has won for eight straight seasons, is tied for
third with Barry Larkin in career Silver Sluggers, trailing only
Barry Bonds (12) and Mike Piazza (10).

Angels right fielder Vladimir Guerrero won for the sixth time
and Boston designated David Ortiz earned his third, all in a row.

First-time winners in the AL included Minnesota first baseman
Justin Morneau and catcher Joe Mauer, and Chicago White Sox third
baseman Joe Crede and right fielder Jermaine Dye.

Washington left fielder Alfonso Soriano won his first NL Silver
Slugger after winning three at second base in the AL. Florida's
Miguel Cabrera won at third base after earning the honor as a left
fielder last year.

NL first-time winners included Philadelphia first baseman Ryan Howard and second baseman Chase Utley, Colorado left fielder
Matt Holliday, Atlanta catcher Brian McCann and Chicago Cubs pitcher
Carlos Zambrano.

Beltran, Guerrero, Ortiz and Ramirez earned $100,000 bonuses,
Zambrano $75,000, Holliday $50,000, and Crede and Dye $15,000 each.
In addition, winning the award boosted Dye's 2007 salary by
$250,000 to $7 million.

The awards are given annually by Hillerich & Bradsby Co., the
maker of Louisville Slugger bats.