01/13/09 1:44 PM EST
Awards Night to spotlight top players
Aviles, Greinke, Soria among those to be honored at dinner
By Dick Kaegel / MLB.com
The new Royals Awards Night will focus on the organization's top Major League and Minor League players on Friday at the Sheraton Overland Park Hotel.
"We're proud of what we're doing here and we want to share that with our fans," said Royals general manager Dayton Moore.
The event will kick off the Royals FanFest weekend.
The big three awards, long a staple in Kansas City, will go to Major Leaguers -- Mike Aviles, Player of the Year; Joakim Soria, Pitcher of the Year, and Zack Greinke, Special Achievement Award.
And there'll be a resumption of the Mr. Baseball Award, named for Royals founder Ewing Kauffman. The winner will be announced at the dinner.
The other awards on an expanded list will go to Minor Leaguers Everett Teaford, Derrick Robinson, Jeff Bianchi, Daniel Cortes and Kila Ka'aihue, manager Brian Rupp, scout Dan Ontiveros, executive Chris Kemple and community leader Patti Lewis.
Awards have been named in honor of former Royals stars, among them Frank White, Willie Wilson and Mike Sweeney, who are scheduled to be on hand as presenters.
"We felt it was important to create awards in the name of some of our great players that stood out in specific areas and to be able to use those awards to celebrate the success of our organization and the accomplishments of different players," Moore said.
Friday's event starts with a cocktail hour at 6 p.m. CT followed an hour later by the dinner and presentations. The master of ceremonies will be Kauffman Stadium's in-house host, Tim Scott.
"It's not sold out yet but hopefully it will be," Moore said.
Tickets, $75 each, are available online at royals.com or by calling 816-504-4040. Tables of 10 are available for $750.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.