If the Veto League All-Star Showcase was played this week, fans would see nine rookies make an appearance in the night game.
At the conclusion of the season, Veto League invites the top 24 players based on games played to participate in the night game showcase at Modern Woodmen Park. In most years, 15 games will solidify a spot in the festivity. This year, however, there is still another 1.5 months to qualify and the top 24 players have already played 13 or more games. There are another 14 players who have played 8-12 games, eight of whom are rookies.
At the All-Star Showcase, players vote for various seasonal awards, including Rookie of the Year. Past winners have been Mark Wishnia (2012), Mike Holst (2011), Rafe Thrasher (2010), Tom DeBroeck (2009), Anthony Reese (2008), Josh Smith (2006), Bob Zerull (2005), Jesus Apodaca (2004) and Colby Moore (2003).
In recent years, voting for ROY has been heavily favored by one individual. However, 2013 has a number of candidates and a case for ROY can be made for any one of them.
RJ Brundies leads all Rookies in games played (17), with Adrian Aitken, Mike Dewitte and Mark Stoffer right behind him with 16 games.
Dewitte is averaging nearly three hits per game and also leads rookies in runs (30). Nate Bates (25), Greg Dutra (24), Rich Hoxie (22) and Jason Huling (21) are trailing Dewitte in that category. Hoxie leads the league in runs per game (2.2).
Rookies are led in RBI by Huling, who has 30 in just 12 games played. Huling also leads all VLB players in RBI/game. Behind Huling in RBI are Dewitte (28), Greg Dutra (20) and Tim DeBroeck (19).
Dewitte (15) and Huling (13) lead all rookies in doubles while Dutra is tied for the VLB lead in triples with three. Hoxie has two triples while Dewitte has one.
Rookies have also been crushing the ball out of the park, combining for 13 of the league’s 28 bombs. They are led by hard hitting lefty Huling, who has went yard five times, including a memorable bottom of the 7th, two out walk-off grand slam last Sunday. Debroeck has three jacks while Dewitte has two.
The single season record for batting average is held by Ryan Barton, who in 2010 batted .678. That record is being challenged this year. Bates leads all VLB hitters with a .661 batting average in 13 games played. Meanwhile, Dewitte is second in average, hitting .627. Huling is boasting a .618 average and Stoffer is at .582.
Stoffer is on pace to shatter the VLB record for win percentage, as he’s 14-2 (.875).
Other rookies currently finding themselves in the top 24 include Creighton Olson and Todd Lopshire.