ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Minor League Baseball™ and the Topps Company announced today that International League Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year Chris Colabello of the Rochester Red Wings and Pacific Coast League Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year Chris Owings of the Reno Aces are among the nine players selected to the Topps Triple-A® All-Star Team. International League Pitcher of the Year J.D. Martin of the Durham Bulls was also named to the squad.
Chris Colabello (30) of Framingham, Mass., hit .352 with 24 home runs and 76 RBIs in 89 games with the Rochester Red Wings. He finished the season first in the International League in batting average, slugging percentage (.639), and on-base percentage (.427) en route to league MVP and Rookie of the Year honors. The Minnesota Twins signed the first baseman as a Minor League free agent in February 2012.
Wilmer Flores (22) of Valencia, Venezuela, hit .321 with 15 home runs and 86 RBIs in 107 games with the Las Vegas 51s. The second baseman finished in the top 10 in the Pacific Coast League in batting average, RBIs and slugging percentage (.531). Flores signed with the New York Mets as a non-drafted free agent in August 2007.
Chris Owings (22) of Charleston, S.C., was named the Pacific Coast League Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year. Owings hit .330 with 12 home runs and 81 RBIs in 125 games. He was also the PCL's leader in hits (180), runs (104) and total bases (263). The Reno Aces shortstop was selected in the first round (41st overall) of the 2009 Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Ryan Wheeler (25) of Torrance, Calif., played in 116 games for the Colorado Springs Sky Sox and finished tied for second in the Pacific Coast League in RBIs (89). Wheeler also posted a .306 batting average with 12 home runs on the season. The Colorado Rockies acquired Wheeler in a November 2012 trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Johnny Monell (27) of Bronx, N.Y., hit .275 with 20 home runs and 64 RBIs. The Fresno Grizzlies catcher finished tied for eighth in the Pacific Coast League in slugging percentage (.494), and tied for fourth in home runs. The San Francisco Giants selected Monell in the 30th round in the 2007 Draft.
Nick Castellanos (21) of Davie, Fla., finished as the International League's co-leader in doubles (37). He was also second in hits (147), third in total bases (240) and tied for fourth in RBIs (76). The Toledo Mud Hens outfielder also hit .276 with 18 home runs. The Detroit Tigers selected Castellanos in the first round (44th overall) of the 2010 Draft.
Michael Choice (24) of Fort Worth, Texas, played in 132 games for the Sacramento River Cats and finished fourth in the Pacific Coast League in hits (154) and tied for second in RBIs (89). He also tied for fourth in runs (90) and seventh in total bases (227). He finished the season with a .302 batting average and 14 home runs. Choice was selected in the first round (10th overall) in the 2010 Draft by the Oakland Athletics.
Nick Buss (27) of Southfield, Mich., finished the season as the Pacific Coast League's leader in RBIs (100). He also finished in the top 10 in hits (139), runs (84), slugging percentage (.525) and OPS (.888). The Albuquerque Isotopes outfielder also hit 11 triples, good for second in the PCL. The Los Angeles Dodgers selected Buss in the eighth round of the 2008 Draft.
J.D. Martin (30) of Ridgecrest, Calif., paced all International League pitchers with 16 wins for the Durham Bulls. His 2.75 ERA was good for third in the IL, and he also finished in the top 10 in strikeouts (116) and WHIP (1.21) on his way to being named International League Pitcher of the Year. Martin signed with the Tampa Bay Rays as a Minor League free agent in January.
2013 TOPPS/MILB TRIPLE-A ALL-STARS
|2B||Wilmer Flores||Las Vegas/PCL||NYM||.321||15||86|
|3B||Ryan Wheeler||Colo. Springs/PCL||COL||.306||12||89|
(Statistics do not reflect players' performances in other leagues)
The best performances in all Minor League Baseball classifications are again being honored by the Topps Company of New York, N.Y., in conjunction with Minor League Baseball.