Baltimore Orioles player of the week: Which slugger came out on top?

Was it a young phenom or the elder statesmen for this week player of the week?
Baltimore Orioles v Cincinnati Reds
Baltimore Orioles v Cincinnati Reds / Dylan Buell/GettyImages

The Baltimore Orioles continue their grueling schedule of 43 games in 45 days, and for the first time in that stretch they may be thankful that they don't have a day off on Monday. The Orioles got the week started with a dominating series win against the New York Yankees, and the team was flying high, only to crash and burn against the Houston Astros.

Still, there is no reason to push the panic button. The Orioles are still one of baseball's best teams and sit only 1.5 games out of first place in the AL East (tied in the loss column). Sometimes you just run into a hot hitting team and that's exactly what happened in Houston.

Even in defeat, several Orioles players stood out for Player of the Week consideration. Adley Rutschman batted nearly .500 for the week and scored five runs. Ryan O'Hearn hit .333 with seven RBI while playing in only four of the team's six games. Jordan Westburg had another big week, with home runs in each of the last two games to set and extend the Orioles team record for most consecutive games with a homer, a record that now stands at 22 and counting.

Even with the offensive success of those players, the Player of the Week boiled down to young superstar Gunnar Henderson against the team's longest tenured player, Anthony Santander. Santander was looking to pull off a repeat after being named Player of the Week last week. He got off to a hot start when he homered in the first game of the week against the Yankees. Tony Taters continued mashing the ball this week, as he's done all month long. He finished the week with three home runs, four runs scored and eight RBI, but it wasn't enough for him to retain the player of the week title.

Gunnar Henderson swipes Orioles Player of the Week honors from Anthony Santander

Reclaiming the crown for the second time this season, Henderson put up MVP like numbers. This week, Henderson batted .333 (8-24), scored nine runs, hit three doubles, notched two home runs, drove in four runs, and added four stolen bases. Henderson's biggest game was the series opener against the Astros where he went 3-5 with three runs, two homers, three RBI and a steal. His bat was quieted in the last two games against the Astros, but he had already done enough damage.

Henderson is having another great month and has firmly entrenched himself in the MVP conversation as we approach the halfway point of the season. He ranks among the league leaders in many offensive categories while leading the league in runs, and he's second in home runs and slugging percentage. Henderson continues to develop into one of the game's top players and should be manning the shortstop position in Baltimore for many years to come.