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Faith on the Field: Aaron Judge, Cody Bellinger Unanimous Picks for Baseball Rookies of the Year

11-14-2017
Cody Bellinger (left) and Aaron Judge (right) were named MLB's Rookies of the Year
Cody Bellinger (left) and Aaron Judge (right) were named MLB's Rookies of the Year

Aaron Judge and Cody Bellinger were unanimously chosen as Major League Baseball's Rookies of the Year Monday night by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

Both players come from faith-filled families, and their record-setting home run seasons lifted their teams – the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Dodgers – into postseason play. 

Judge won American League honors, becoming the first Yankees player to receive the award since shortstop Derek Jeter in 1996.

Bellinger received the National League award. He is the Dodgers' record 18th Rookie of the Year winner.

Judge led the AL with 52 home runs – a rookie record. Bellinger hit 39 homers for an NL rookie record.

A devout Christian, Judge, 22, has often spoken about his faith and his adoptive parents, who have shied away from the spotlight.

"I feel they kind of picked me,'' Aaron told The New York Post in 2015. "I feel that God was the one that matched us together.''

"Some kids grow in their mom's stomach; I grew in my mom's heart,'' Judge added. "She's always showed me love and compassion ever since I was a little baby. I've never needed to think differently or wonder about anything.''

"Words can't describe how proud of him we are," Aaron's father Wayne told The New York Post in July. "If it happens to end tomorrow, he's the type of kid who will say, 'It was meant to be' and move on."

And Bellinger's mom, Jennifer, is a faith-filled follower of God, and incredibly proud of her son Cody. Her Twitter bio starts with "God," and ends with "Mom."

"God, family, friends, fashion, good food and music.... and all about the baseball life, wife, and mom," she says.

Jennifer told MLB.com in May she was excited to see her son get called up by the Dodgers. She said she started to cry when she saw footage of his name being stitched on the back of a jersey.

"As a mother, what you want for your kids is them to be doing what they love to be doing as an adult — to be in that sweet spot of life of what they've been designed to do, and as a mom, you raise the kids to be a great adult," she said. "I love that he has this character to be a great person and a great teammate, and as a mother, that's what you want to see in your kids more than anything."

During her son's World Series performance she retweeted this Bible verse about the power of prayer:

She also offered these other scripture verses in October:

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