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Nuts' Matthes, Bettis earn top honors

Rockies duo earn Cal MVP, Pitcher of the Year awards
August 31, 2011
It's no secret why Modesto owns the California League's best record.

A pair of Nuts were awarded the Cal League's top honors Wednesday as Kent Matthes and Chad Bettis joined two more Modesto teammates on the 2011 postseason All-Star team.

Matthes, Colorado's fourth-round pick in 2009, was named the league's Most Valuable Player after hitting .334 with a league-best .642 slugging percentage. Bettis, a right-hander, took home Pitcher of the Year honors. Nuts infielders Josh Rutledge and Nolan Arenado also made the squad.

Through 93 games, Matthes, a Florida native, has 23 homers, 95 RBIs, 39 doubles and seven steals for first-place Modesto (37-27, second half).

One of the outfielder's biggest games of the season came last month when the University of Alabama product homered three times and knocked home seven runs July 24 against High Desert. He ranks third in the league in homers and second in doubles.

Bettis, a Cal mid-season All-Star, has won a pair of Pitcher of the Week awards and ranks second in the league with a dozen wins for the Nuts. His 1.12 WHIP leads the circuit, while his 3.44 ERA ranks third. His 175 strikeouts are the most among active Cal League pitchers this season. (Inland Empire's Ariel Pena had 180 strikeouts before a recent promotion to Triple-A Salt Lake.)

Giants outfielder Gary Brown, the organization's first-round pick in 2010, earned Rookie of the Year thanks in part to his .338 batting average, which ranks third in the league. He leads the circuit with 13 triples and is third with 49 steals for San Jose.

Rancho Cucamonga's Juan Bustabad was named Manager of the Year, and San Jose pitching coach Brian Cooper was named Coach of the Year.

Rutledge anchors an All-Star infield that also includes San Jose catcher Tommy Joseph, Lake Elsinore first baseman Nathan Freiman, Visalia second baseman David Nick and Arenado, the third baseman.

Stockton's Michael Choice was the third outfielder alongside Matthes and Brown. San Jose's Craig Westcott, Rancho Cucamonga's Jon Michael Redding and Visalia's Tyler Skaggs joined Bettis on the mound.

The full roster is below:

2011 California League Postseason All-Star Team
Position Players
C Tommy Joseph San Jose San Francisco
1B Nathan Freiman Lake Elsinore San Diego
2B David Nick Visalia Arizona
3B Nolan Arenado Modesto Colorado
SS Josh Rutledge Modesto Colorado
OF Gary Brown*** San Jose San Francisco
OF Kent Matthes* Modesto Colorado
OF Michael Choice Stockton Oakland
DH Angelo Songco Rancho Cucamonga Los Angeles (NL)
UT Kole Calhoun Inland Empire Los Angeles (AL)
RHP Chad Bettis** Modesto Colorado
RHP Craig Westcott San Jose Philadelphia
RHP Jon Michael Redding Rancho Cucamonga Los Angeles (NL)
RHP Tyler Skaggs Visalia Arizona
Field Staff
Manager Juan Bustabad Rancho Cucamonga Los Angeles (NL)
Coach Brian Cooper San Jose Philadelphia
Trainer Clete Sigwart Bakersfield Cincinnati
Turf Manager Peter Hayes Lake Elsinore San Diego
Clubbie Alex Mookas Lancaster Houston

* Most Valuable Player
** Pitcher of the Year
*** Rookie of the Year

Danny Wild is an editor for