Together with Yankees’ manager Aaron Boone and third baseman Miguel Andujar, Amsterdam born Didi Gregorius was honored with the Thurman Munson Award. This award is given to professional and Olympic athletes in recognition of their athletic achievements and their contributions to the community.
The Thurman Munson Award event raised money to benefit the AHRC New York City Foundation and help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Also New York Giants center Zak DeOssie and former Mets first baseman Ed Kranepool were honored at the event.
Gregorius made clear that he will not be ready for Opening Day as he is still recovering from Tommy John surgery. Before heading to Tampa, however, Gregorius was honored with the Munson Award. He is known for visiting children’s hospitals and handing out umbrellas and beanies in the streets of New York.
Humble as he is, Gregorius stated: “It’s Thurman Munson’s legacy, but I can’t be compared to him.
Since the Yankees acquired Gregorius in a trade from the Diamondbacks in the 2015 off season, Gregorius has improved every year. Even though his batting average dropped slightly last season, his OBP (.335), SLG (.494) and OPS (.829) improved compared to previous seasons.
Also the amount of strikeouts has dropped eversince he joined the Yankees. Last season he struck out a personal low 69 times since joining the Yankees.
The Thurman Munson Award was created by Diane Munson in 1980, a year after her husband was killed in a plane crash. The event was supposed to last no more than a few years. “It’s going strong after 39 years,” Munson said. “What an honor for Thurman. What a wonderful way to honor his legacy by doing so many good works. I toured some facilities and I saw the classrooms and the workshops. I see where the money goes. It’s so touching and it means so much to our family. What a good way to honor Thurman and what a wonderful way to help all the individuals.”