Five Aeros were named to the Eastern League All-Star team today - 1B Beau Mills, C Carlos Santana, OF Nick Weglarz, RHP Hector Rondon and RHP and closer Vinnie Pestano.
The quintet will represent Akron on the Southern Division roster at the July 15th E.L. All-Star Game at Waterfront Park in Trenton.
Mills has been one of the more consistent Aeros players this season, playing in 71 games at first base and leading the squad with 21 multi-hit outings. He is now batting .256 with six home runs and 40 RBI. Mills was Cleveland’s first-round pick in the 2007 draft, and was named the 2008 Carolina League MVP with Class-A Kinston after hitting .293 with 21 home runs and 90 RBI.
Santana, the top-ranked prospect in the Indians organization according to Baseball America, is batting .269 in 71 games and ranks in the Top-10 in the eague in runs scored (52), home runs (12), RBI (47), on-base percentage (.403) and slugging percentage (.498). He also leads the Eastern League with 53 walks, and is currently on pace for 99 on the season - which would set a new franchise record (Ken Ramos had 82 in 1992). Acquired in the casey Blake deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers last July, Santana won the 2008 California League MVP award despite playing only 99 games for Class-A Inland Empire.
One of the hottest hitters in all of baseball currently, Weglarz saw his 23-game on-base streak end Tuesday night against the Bowie Baysox. After collecting just five hits in April, the 2008 Canadian Olympian has carryied the Aeros offensively for the past two months. Since May 1st, Weglarz is batting .305 with 14 doubles, 11 home runs, 35 runs scored and 49 runs batted in. He entered the season rated as the third-best prospect in the organization by Baseball America.
Rondon, a 21-year-old Venezuelan native who started the year 5-0 in his first five starts, remains among the league leaders in several categories. He is one of only five pitchers to accumulate seven wins or more, and currently ranks sixth with a 2.59 ERA in 14 games (12 starts). His 65 strikeouts lead the team and are tied for eighth in the EL. Further, Rondon has not allowed a run in his past three starts (14.1 innings pitched).
Pestano has been as automatic as it gets at the back end of the Aeros bullpen this season, going 2-3 with a 3.26 ERA while recording 21 saves in 24 chances. Pestano's saves are the most in the Eastern League by a wide margin (the next closest is 15). He ranked second in the Indians chain with 24 saves last season, and is on pace to break the recently-retired Randy Newsom’s single-season franchise record of 29 saves set just last year.