What do you do for an encore after you hit .367 to finish second in the minor leagues in a season? Well, starting out with a .449/.471/.673 line through the first 11 games is a pretty good start! Adam Kennedy is officially just keeping the Angels' second base job warm for Kendrick.
Erick Aybar, SS, Salt Lake
Several baseball people around the league raised eyebrows when the Angels dumped Alberto Callaspo early in spring training. With Aybar hitting .348 with a surprising .543 slugging percentage, it's likely few will still question the decision. Seven strikeouts against only one walk is the only item of concern thus far.
Rafael Rodriguez, RHP, Rancho Cucamonga
Two starts; two wins. 12 innings; 14 strikeouts and one walk. Those are impressive numbers anywhere! After a rocky go of it in his first stint at Rancho last year, the wiry hurler is looking to make a big leap forward this season.
Brandon Wood, SS, Arkansas
How many guys could collect eight extra-base hits in their first 10 games and have it be considered a so-so start? His .333/.413/.641 line would lead the pack in most organizations. It's the 13 strikeouts and five errors that are actually worth worrying about.
Jose Arredondo, RHP, Rancho Cucamonga
Who says the Cal League is a hitters league? The 22-year-old from the Dominican has 16 strikeouts against one walk in 10 innings of work. Now, if he could only get some help from his teammates, that 1.80 ERA might translate into a win or two.
Stephen Marek, RHP, Cedar Rapids
The big righty signed as a draft-and-follow last spring. Now he's got a 0.77 ERA through 11.2 innings in the Midwest League.
Sean Rodriguez, SS, Rancho Cucamonga
He's leading the Cal League with a .458 average and has a pair of homers to go along with it. Not bad for a guy who won't celebrate his 21st birthday until next week.
Nick Green, LHP, Rancho Cucamonga
Didn't the starters at Rancho get the memo about how hard it is to pitch in the Cal League? A 2.31 ERA with 12 strikeouts through 11.2 innings looks pretty nice.
Reggie Willits, OF, Salt Lake
When you've hit well enough to move between Aybar and Kendrick at the top of the lineup, you've done something right. The speedy outfielder is not only hitting .313, but is slugging an even .500. Expect the second number to drop.
Pat Reilly, OF, Cedar Rapids
The Orange County native is leading the club in batting average, on-base percentage, runs scored and stolen bases, and is second with a .593 slugging percentage. Not bad for a player who went undrafted out of the University of Arizona last year.
Also getting attention:
Dustin Moseley – After a rocky year last year, the former first-round pick acquired for Ramon Ortiz is looking good to start the year in Salt Lake.
Bob Zimmerman – The closer in Arkansas has allowed one hit in four innings while picking up a pair of saves.
Mike Eylward - While Wood's the obvious hitter to watch for the Travelers, it's actually Eylward whose name is all over the Texas League leader boards with a .400 average and .700 slugging percentage.