The White Sox’ Yermin Mercedes was named the American League Rookie of the Month. | Steph Chambers/Getty Images
Mercedes batted .415/.455./659 with a 1.113 OPS with five home runs and five doubles in 22 games in April.
Yermin Mercedes, who opened the season with hits in his first eight plate appearances and kept on producing to the end of April, was named American League Rookie of the Month on Monday.
Mercedes, 28, batted .415/.455./659 with a 1.113 OPS with five home runs and five doubles in 22 games in April. His eight hits in a row are the most by a player to begin a season in baseball’s modern era since 1900. Mercedes entered the year with one major league plate appearance.
Mercedes’ 34 hits established a Sox rookie record in March/April, breaking the mark of 31 set byJosé Abreu in 2014. Mercedes becamse the 10th player in AL history, and the first since Brent Abernathy and Ichiro Suzuki in 2001, to have two four-plus hit games in his first 17 games. Mercedes is the first White Sox to have five three-hit games in his first 18 games.
The 5-11, 245-pound catcher who has been used almost exclusively as a designated hitter by manager Tony La Russa, Mercedes hit a 485-foot homer against Royals right-hander Brad Keller on April 8 at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Getting his first opportunity in the major leagues after 10 years in the minor leagues, the former Rule 5 Draft selection quickly become a fan favorite. “Yerminator” T-shirts have circulated and a “Yerminator” hamburger is already on the menu at a restaurant not far from Guaranteed Rate Field.
“Now, everybody’s doing stuff for me, like T-shirts, like the burger, everything,” Mercedes said recently. “So that’s the reason I’m working hard every day, to be part of my fans, my people next to me. Just so excited. A couple months ago, I wouldn’t have believed that I would be at this point right now.
“I never imagined I would be here,” Mercedes said recently. “Now we’re here, keep going. Don’t put the head down. Just keep doing what I’m doing every day to keep it at that point. That’s great for me, because I’m with my people, with my fans. So I’m excited for that.”