With the All-Star game around the corner, these six rookies have impressed by making the most of their chances...
1. Thom Monroe, 1B/ DH Chicago Billy Goats - The 25 yr old former first round pick has been tearing up the minors since being drafted in S11. Monroe has been tearing up AL pitching and leading all major league rookies in batting average (.335), Home runs (33), RBIs (86), OPS (1.075 ) and Slugging (.697) while being the leading vote getter to be the starting first baseman for the AL All-Star team.
2. Santos Santana, 1B St. Louis Kamikazes - The gentle giant from Almirante, Panama, with a name more reminiscent of a wrestling luchador than a major league ball player was signed to a 16 million bonus in S12, and in just 3 seasons he has shown that he belongs in the Majors. Santana has hit a career high 32 HRs in less than half a season at the ML level, while hitting .290 and swiping 11 bases. Santana is the undisputed NL rookie of the year for the first half of the season.
3. Buddy Bailey, DH Salem Whips- Bailey is hitting .318 and has a .428 OBP with 23 HRs. If it wasn't for Thom Monroe, Bailey would be putting together one of the most impresive rookie seasons in AL history.
4. Guy Zaun, RP San Antonio Stallions - Zaun has been the best rookie pitcher in the AL. He has been snubbed as an all-star selection, but he has been impressive with a 1.01 WHIP in 96 innings, holding batters to a .181 AVG and has not allowed a single inherited runner to score.
5. Bey Franco, SP El Paso Fighting Tacos - Franco has been the NLs best rookie pitcher, starting 10 games and holding a 7-4 record with 104 Ks in 115 innings.
6. Juan Pena, SP/RP Burlington Bison - Pena, a Rule 5 selction taken from the Colorado Colorado Crush, has been a big reason that the Bison are not in the basement of the division. Pena gracefully shifted between bullpen and rotation before being awarded a spot in the rotation. The native of Noord, Aruba has a 5-1 record in 9 starts as the Bison's #5 man, and nailed 2 saves in 2 save opportunities, and a 2.70 ERA.