2010 Silver Hawks All-Star Profiles

Infielders Matt Davidson and Chris Owings will join pitchers Charles Brewer and Eric Smith as representatives from the South Bend Silver Hawks on the Eastern Division All-Stars. The Midwest League All-Star game is being played at Fort Wayne's Parkview Field on June 22nd. Here is more info on the Silver Hawks quartet.

Matt Davidson has been the Hawks' best offensive player for the first two months of the season.  He leads the club in total bases (105), on-base percentage (.373), slugging (.488), and on-base-plus-slugging (.861).  He also shares the team lead in homers and RBI with fellow third baseman and fellow high 2009 draft pick Bobby Borchering.  Both sluggers currently have seven homers and 34 RBI.

Among the Midwest League leaders, Davidson's slugging ranks 8th and his OPS ranks 10th.  Last year's 35th overall pick in the draft, Davidson had an 11-game hitting streak in April, but drew only one walk that entire month.  His selectivity has improved greatly, as he has taken 19 free passes in the 36 games since.

An 0-for-5 setback last night brought Chris Owings' season batting average down to .297, but he still edges out Davidson for the team lead in batting average among Silver Hawks with at least 100 at-bats.  He also paces the squad in hits and runs scored.  Owings ranks second on the team in doubles, triples, slugging, and total bases, plus third in homers and RBI.  His 68 hits ties him for 6th in the league.

Incredibly, Owings is the youngest player on South Bend's roster.  He was selected 41st overall in last summer's draft out of Gilbert high school and has impressed with his defense at shortstop as well as with his offensive prowess.  The 18-year-old's current .961 fielding percentage is higher than that of several major league shortstops.

Quite frankly, Charles Brewer has been the best pitcher in the Midwest League.  His 1.45 ERA does rank second to Clinton's Anthony Vazquez at 1.29, but Vazquez has made four fewer starts, won two fewer games, and logged 13.1 fewer innings.  Brewer also ranks second in the league with 72 strikeouts, accompanied by just 18 walks.  Fabio Martinez Mesa of Cedar Rapids has fanned 86, but he has also walked 46 batters. 

A 12th round pick last year, Brewer is proving to be one of the steals of the 2009 draft.  He figures to receive a promotion to Hi-A Visalia immediately following the All-Star break.

While Eric Smith hasn't been quite as dominant as Brewer has, it is Smith who leads the Silver Hawks with five victories this season.  He has only allowed two runs all season in the first or second innings of his starts.  From April 10 to May 1, Smith had a scoreless innings streak of 23.1 frames, and he finished the month of April with an unbelievable 0.75 ERA.

The big sinkerballer has added velocity since he started the playoff opener for the Silver Haws last fall.  He was selected 60th overall in last year's draft and ranked as the 22nd-best prospect in the organization this winter..

While no Silver Hawks player was elected to start the game, all should see some time off the bench. Starting pitchers are still to be determined based on rotation turns and pitch counts, so there is a possibility that Brewer or Smith could get the starting nod.

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