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Lopez is Heart and Hustle candidate

Lopez is Heart and Hustle candidate

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SEATTLE -- Jose Lopez has been selected as the Mariners' candidate to receive the 2009 Heart and Hustle Award, which will be presented next month in New York.

Lopez has hit a career-high 25 home runs going into the final three games of the regular season and leads the Mariners with 93 RBIs, making him one of the most productive offensive second basemen in the American League.

He has three walk-off hits this season and six in his career, including a bases-loaded single in the bottom of the 14th inning against the Athletics on May 1. The game-winning hit came after he had fouled off nine consecutive pitches.

The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association created the Heart and Hustle Award in 2005, voted on by Alumni Major League players and presented annually to an active player who demonstrates a passion for the game of baseball and best embodies the values, spirit, and traditions of the game.

Previous winners are Indians center fielder Grady Sizemore (2008), former Astros star Craig Biggio (2006 and '07) and shortstop David Eckstein (2005).

The '09 winner will be presented with the award at the Legends for Youth Dinner on Nov. 6 in New York.

Jim Street is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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