Melky Cabrera Disqualifies Himself From Batting Title

melky cabrera giants

Cabrera has been disqualified from the National League batting title

Stating that he does not want to win an award that would be considered tainted, San Francisco Giants outfielder Melky Cabrera requested that he be disqualified from the National League batting title, according to sources.

Cabrera, who will be a free agent at season’s end, asked the players’ association to relay his desire to the commissioner’s office. An agreement that made him ineligible for the batting crown was reached on Friday.

In August, the 28-year-old Cabrera was suspended for 50 games for violating MLB’s Drug Policy. He was hitting .346 with 11 home runs, 60 RBI and a .906 OPS to accompany 10 triples, 13 stolen bases and a National League-leading 159 hits and 84 runs.

Cabrera has 501 plate appearances, one fewer than the required amount if the Giants play 162 games. Under section 10.22(a) of the Official Baseball Rules, he would win the batting title if an extra hitless at-bat is added to his average and it remained higher than that of any other qualifying player.

“I have no wish to win an award that would be tainted,” Cabrera said in a release. “I believe it would be far better for someone more deserving to win. I am grateful that the Players Association and MLB were able to honor my request by suspending the rule for this season. I know that changing the rules mid-season can present problems, and I thank the Players Association and MLB for finding a way to get this done.”

MLB Commissioner Bud Selig gladly granted Cabrera’s request, avoiding potential controversy.

“After giving this matter the consideration it deserves, I have decided that Major League Baseball will comply with Mr. Cabrera’s request,”  Selig said in a statement. “I respect his gesture as a sign of his regret and his desire to move forward, and I believe that, under these circumstances, the outcome is appropriate, particularly for Mr. Cabrera’s peers who are contending for the batting crown.”

With Cabrera ineligible, Pittsburgh’s Andrew McCutchen (.339) and Cabrera’s teammate, San Francisco catcher Buster Posey (.335) are the top contenders for the batting title.