Best Rookie -- Gaby Sanchez
New Times Best of Broward-Palm Beach edition is here, folks.
In his rookie season, Marlins first baseman Gaby Sanchez hit .273 -- the third-highest among regular starters, behind Hanley Ramirez and Dan Uggla.
His rookie counterparts -- Logan Morrison and Mike Stanton -- were fantastic playmakers as rookies but didn't have nearly the production that Sanchez did.
He showed up to work just about every day -- joining Ramirez and Uggla as the only Marlins players to average 3.1 plate appearances per team game.
Chipping in with 19 homers and 84 RBI didn't hurt either.
Sanchez' premier "play" as a rookie came on September 1 against the Washington Nationals.
Up by ten runs, Marlins pitcher Chris Volstad threw a pitch about three feet behind Nationals outfielder Nyjer Morgan.
Morgan charged the mound, and Sanchez came in with a WWF-style clothesline:
His production was phenomenal for a rookie last year, and he's taking it to a new level this year.
Through 263 at-bats in 69 games, Sanchez is hitting .308 with 12 home runs and 43 runs batted in.
Out of the Marlins players qualified for the batting title by plate appearances per game this year, Sanchez is the team leader in batting average, RBI, on-base percentage, and hits. He trails team home run leader Mike Stanton by four home runs going in to today.
Congratulations, Gaby Sanchez -- New Times' Best Rookie in 2011.
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