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Minor league players of the year

The Rangers have announced that Thomas Diamond is the 2005 Nolan Ryan minor league pitcher of the year and third baseman Travis Metcalf is the 2005 Tom Grieve minor league player of the year.

While Diamond's selection over Edison Volquez is a little surprising, but the selection of Travis Metcalf was pretty shocking, to me at least.

Metcalf had a very nice season at Bakersfield, with a .291/.358/.513, and he's gotten great reviews for his defense at third. However, Jason Botts and Adrian Gonzalez both had better offensive seasons at AAA, and Gerald Laird had a similar offensive season and was named the best defensive catcher in the PCL...all three would seem to have been more likely choices than Metcalf.

Strangely, Dom Chiti said that Joaquin Arias was "also strongly considered". Not only did Arias have a lesser year than the three guys in AAA I named, but he also paled in comparison to Ian Kinsler. Kinsler put up at .274/.348/.464 line at AAA, while Arias sported a .315/.335/.423 line at AA. Not sure how Arias would be considered ahead of Kinsler, Botts, Laird, and Gonzalez -- or, for that matter, Kevin Mahar -- but he apparently impressed someone...