Batter of the Year: Dustin Martin, Outfielder
Martin came over to the Minnesota Twins in the Luis Castillo trade last season, and has since blossomed into one of the premier outfield prospects in the Twins organization. He was in New Britain during the 2008 season, and put together one of the finer overall seasons of any of the Twins outfield prospects. He showed a rare blend of speed and the ability to hit for power and average. In 133 contests, Martin batted a very respectable .290, blasting ten home runs, while driving in 72. He also swiped 22 bags, showing off the fact that he is considered by many as a four-to-five tool prospect. He committed only two errors in the outfield, scored 68 times, and led the team with eight triples. In total, Martin had 52 extra-base hits, and appears ready to make the jump to Rochester in 2009.
Honorable Mention: Luke Hughes (.319BA, 15HR), Steven Tolleson (.300BA, 12SB), Danny Valencia (.289BA, 10HR)
Pitcher of the Year: Ben Julianel, Closer
Not often do we name relievers as our Pitcher of the Year, but Julianel put up the kind of numbers that jump off the stat sheet in 2008. The lefty closer saved 26 of 28 opportunities for the Rock Cats, and posted a 2.37 earned run average along the way. In total, Julianel struck out better than a batter per inning, held the opposition to a .235 batting average, and won three against two. It was a breakout season of sorts for Julianel, who is now one of the top closing options in the Twins organization, along with the names of Anthony Slama and Robert Delaney to name a few.
Honorable Mention: Robert Delaney (1.05ERA, 23G), Jose Mijares (2.93ERA, 11G), Zachary Ward (3.77ERA, 46G)