El Paso Chihuahuas’ outfielder Hunter Renfroe has been voted the 80th Most Valuable Player in Pacific Coast League history, the league office announced Thursday.
Renfroe secured two-thirds of the votes from the league’s field managers and media representatives to become the fourth Padres’ farmhand to win the award. Sandy Alomar, Jr. did so most recently in 1989 with the Las Vegas Stars – the second of his back-to-back MVP awards. Kevin McReynolds (1983, Las Vegas) and Timothy Pyznarski (1986, Las Vegas) were also recognized. Reno’s Kyle Jensen, the PCL home run and RBI leader, finished runner-up to Renfroe.
In his first full Triple-A season, the four-year professional has enjoyed a career year to pace a Chihuahuas offense that has scored the second-most runs the league. In 128 games, he leads all Triple-A players in extra-base hits (68) and total bases (290), while ranking second in home runs (29) and RBI (104).
Renfroe is seeking to become Minor League Baseball’s fourth player this season to eclipse 30 home runs and 100 RBI. Additionally, the 24-year-old has collected 159 hits (.306 batting average), the second-most among Triple-A players, with a .559 slugging percentage and 94 runs scored, both of which rank third for Minor League Baseball’s highest classification.
Renfroe racked up a season-high four hits, including his first career grand slam, in a June 27 win against Reno. Two weeks earlier, on June 12 he drove in a season-high five runs, part of a three-hit effort, in a victory over Sacramento.
The following night, Renfroe had a walk-off single in the 13th inning against Albuquerque for the back-to-back Pacific Southern Division Champions. Furthermore, he recorded a season-best 16 game hitting streak fromJune 26 through July 18 in which he hit .437 (31-for-71) with six home runs, 19 RBI and 17 runs scored.
The Mississippi native has already received multiple honors this season. Renfroe, earlier this week, was named an outfielder on the All-PCL
Team. Over the All-Star break, he was the starting right fielder for Team USA in the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game, drawing a walk in three trips to the plate.
Days later, he started in center field in the Triple-A All-Star Game. Renfroe was also tabbed the PCL Player of the Week for April 18-24 after hitting a home run in four consecutive games.
Renfroe was selected by the Padres with the 13th overall pick of the 2013 First-Year Player Draft out of Mississippi State and entered this season as San Diego’s third-best prospect according to Baseball America. He was also tabbed a Mid-Season All-Star in 2013 with Single-A Eugene and in 2014 with Single-A Lake Elsinore.
Renfroe played in the 2014 Arizona Fall League and was named to the All-Prospect Team. In 459 career games, he has hit .281 (507-for-1804) with 82 home runs and 302 RBI.