2008 Cards Minors Rookie Hitter of the Year

Top draft pick Brett Wallace demonstrated his hitting skills over two levels and the third baseman is our 2008 St. Louis Cardinals Minor League Rookie Hitter of the Year.

When the St. Louis Cardinals drafted Brett Wallace with the 13th overall pick in 2008, most baseball watchers knew he would hit. But most could not know the third baseman would hit so well. With a .337 average including a .367 mark at Double-A, Brett Wallace is our Minors Rookie Hitter of the Year.

The choice was not an easy one. Late-round selection Curt Smith made it interesting by being named the Appalachian League Player of the Year after posting some gaudy numbers at Johnson City. But in the end, Wallace got the nod for his production at higher levels in the system at around the same age as Smith.

Not only did Wallace finish second among rookies in average but also he led them in on-base percentage, OPS, and tied for first in home runs. The Arizona State product was second among rookies in runs created, isolated power, and third in slugging. He finished the season helping Springfield in their quest for a playoff berth.

Wallace's time in the Texas League was highlighted by a two home runs, including a walk off blast that put the team in a first-place tie with Northwest Arkansas. He continues play in the prestigious Arizona Fall League, where he was named to the Future Stars Showcase game.

Honorable Mention

The Cardinals' 39th round selection this June, first baseman Smith led the qualifiers in this category in batting average, slugging percentage, runs created, RBIs with 59, twenty more than Wallace. Smith also tied Wallace for the home run lead with eight long balls.

Tenth-rounder Alex Castellanos was credited with the top isolated power number and he stole the most bases, 20. The Belmont-Abbey second base product was second in slugging, third in OPS and home runs while finishing fourth in RBIs and fifth in average.

A catalyst for the Batavia Muckdogs, Colt Sedbrook finished third among rookies in on base percentage, runs created, and stolen bases. The former Arizona Wildcats shortstop finished fourth in average.

Outfielder Shane Peterson was one of the offensive keys for the league champion Batavia team. The former Dirtbag finished second in on base percentage and RBIs. The left-handed swinger put up the fourth-best OPS.

Third-round pick, shortstop Niko Vasquez logged the fifth-best on-base percentage and slugging percentage, which also translated to the fifth-highest OPS.

By the numbers

As with all system-wide awards, there was significant competition. Our own Leonda Markee assembled 2008 system-wide stats, both traditional and sabermetric, for Cardinals rookie minor league position players.

Batting Average
Rk Team Player  POS  AVG  AB 
1 QC/JC Curt Smith 1B 0.353 84 238
2 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 3B 0.337 68 202
3 JC/GCL Ryde Rodriguez OF 0.329 52 158
4 Bat Colt Sedbrook 2B 0.305 84 275
5 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 0.295 61 207
On-Base Percentage
Rk Team Player  OBP BB  HBP AB 
1 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 0.427 68 19 13 202
2 Bat Shane Peterson 0.400 67 39 4 230
3 Bat Colt Sedbrook 0.394 84 24 17 275
4 QC/JC Curt Smith 0.388 84 11 4 238
5 QC/JC Niko Vasquez 0.383 71 33 6 247
Rk Team Player  OBP BB  HBP AB 
1 QC/JC Curt Smith 0.538 18 1 8 238
2 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 0.531 16 6 7 207
3 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 0.530 13 1 8 202
4 GCL Rainel Rosario 0.426 12 2 5 169
5 QC/JC Niko Vasquez 0.413 17 1 4 247
Rk Team Player  POS  OBP SLG OPS
1 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 3B 0.427 0.530 0.957
2 QC/JC Curt Smith 1B 0.388 0.538 0.926
3 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 0.352 0.531 0.884
4 Bat Shane Peterson OF 0.400 0.409 0.809
5 QC/JC Niko Vasquez SS 0.383 0.413 0.796
Runs Created
Rk Team Player  POS  RC
1 QC/JC Curt Smith 1B 47.4
2 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 3B 42.1
3 Bat Colt Sedbrook 2B 38.8
4 QC/JC Niko Vasquez SS 38.8
5 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 37.9
Home Runs
Rk Team Player  POS  HR AB HR/AB
T1 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 3B 8 202 25.3
T1 QC/JC Curt Smith 1B 8 238 29.8
3 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 7 207 29.6
Isolated Power
Rk Team Player  POS  ISO
1 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 0.208
2 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 3B 0.188
3 QC/JC Curt Smith 1B 0.181
Runs Batted In
Rk Team Player  POS  RBI AB
1 QC/JC Curt Smith 1B 59 238
2 Bat Shane Peterson OF 39 230
3 Sprf/QC Brett Wallace 3B 36 202
4 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 35 207
5 Bat Colt Sedbrook 2B 33 275
Stolen Bases
Rk Team Player  POS  SB CS
1 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 20 3
2 JC/GCL Luis Mateo MI 15 3
3 Bat Colt Sedbrook 2B 13 8
Rk Team Player  POS  SO PA K/PA
1 GCL David Medina 1B 53 175 3.3
2 GCL Rainel Rosario OF 50 201 4.0
3 QC/JC Niko Vasquez SS 69 291 4.2
4 Bat Shane Peterson OF 65 275 4.2
5 Bat/JC Alex Castellanos 2B 52 228 4.4


Master article with all 2008 Scout.com Cardinals Minor League Players of the Year and the schedule for daily announcements: link. (This link is also permanently located at the lower left of The Birdhouse home page.)



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