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Jorge Soler named finalist for AL Players Choice Comeback Player of the Year

And what a comeback!

Jorge Soler #12 of the Kansas City Royals hits a home run in the first inning against the Minnesota Twins at Kauffman Stadium on September 29, 2019 in Kansas City, Missouri. Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Jorge Soler has been named a finalist for the American League Comeback Player of the Year Award in the 2019 Players Choice Awards, according to the MLBPA. Soler appeared in all 162 games and hit .265/.354/.569 with f95 runs scored, 73 walks and 117 RBI, and he led the league with 48 home runs, the first Royals player to ever lead the league. Soler, who was worth 3.7 WAR, according to Baseball Reference, played at least 100 games in a season for the first time since 2015.

Joining Soler as finalists are White Sox pitcher Lucas Giolito and Rangers designated hitter Hunter Pence. The 24-year old Giolito had a breakout season this year, winning 14 games with a 3.41 ERA and 228 strikeouts in 176 23 innings worth 4.0 WAR, and being named to his first All-Star team. The 36-year old Pence was signed to a minor league deal by the Rangers after an All-Star career with the Astros, Phillies, and Giants, and rebounded after a poor 2018 season to hit .297/.358/.552 with 18 HR 59 RBI, and was worth 1.7 WAR.

The National League finalists for the award are Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu, Braves third baseman Josh Donaldson, and Reds pitcher Sonny Gray. The winner of the Comeback Player Award will receive a grant of $20,000 from the Major League Baseball Players Trust to direct to a charity of their choice. Winners will be announced the week of October 21.

Mike Moustakas is the only Royals player to ever win the award, taking it home in 2017. The award is not to be confused with the MLB Comeback Player of the Year Award, which is given by Major League Baseball.