Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) tags Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Alberto Callaspo (5) in a rundown during the seventh inning. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)
Photo: Butch Dill
Photo: Butch Dill

Simmons given Braves Heart and Hustle Award

Shortstop Andrelton Simmons received the Braves Heart and Hustle Award in a pre-game ceremony before Atlanta hosted the Giants Monday at Turner Field.

Simmons and 29 other players are “preliminary winners,” nominees from each team for the MLB’s overall Heart and Hustle Award, which is given to the player who best demonstrates passion and top-notch work ethic on and off the field.

“He does all those (things),” manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “He hurt himself two days ago trying to make that catch over his shoulder and he jammed his thumb on it. You look at his body of work over the last 3 1/2 years and you get to appreciate watching this guy do all those things.”

Simmons, whose sprained thumb kept him from starting Monday, also won the Braves award in 2013. Jason Heyward received the honor last year. No Brave has taken home the overall Heart and Hustle Award, which has been around since 2005.

Simmons, Heyward and Brian McCann have received the Braves award twice.

The award is presented by the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association, which created committees of former players for all 30 teams to choose the nominees. Near the end of the season, fans and current and former big-leaguers will vote to decide who gets the overall award.

Pittsburgh’s Josh Harrison won last year and Boston’s Dustin Pedroia won it the year before.

The overall winner will be announced Nov. 10 at the 16th annual Legends for Youth Dinner in New York City.

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