For the final month of the regular season, KC Royals closer Greg Holland was named Major League Baseball’s Delivery Man of the Month for September. This is the second time this season he was honored with the award (he won it back in July). He is just the fifth pitcher to win the award at least twice in a season since the award’s inception back in 2005 (Rafael Soriano in 2010, JJ Putz in 2011, Aroldis Chapman in 2012, and Jason Grilli also won the award twice this season in April and May).
Joakim Soria was the only other Royals pitcher to win the award and that happened twice (in September of both 2008 and 2009).
Holland was a major reason why the Royals were in contention for a playoff spot into the final week of the season. In September, he was 11-of-12 in save opportunities while pitching in 15 games. Over 15 September innings, he allowed one run on seven hits and four walks while striking out 20. Opponents hit just .137 against him in the season’s final month.
Holland struck out multiple batters in seven of his 15 appearances. Against Cleveland on September 11th, he struck out all three batters he faced with two on and nobody out in the ninth.
Holland became the single-season saves record holder on September 26th when he picked up his 46th save of the season (which came against the Chicago White Sox). He picked up his 47th save in his final appearance of the season on September 29th against those same White Sox. In that game, he struck out two batters to tie the Royals single-season record for strikeouts by a reliever with 103 (tied with Jim York, who set the record back in 1971).
Holland finished the season ranked second in the American League in saves behind Baltimore’s Jim Johnson (who had 50). He was first in strikeouts and finished with a 1.21 ERA (which is lowest in team history). His 103 strikeouts are the most by a reliever in the AL since Putz back in 2006.
By earning the award twice, Holland has to be a front runner for the yearly award.