The St. Louis Cardinals will send two members of their AA affiliate to the 2012 MLB Futures Game, one of the first festivities to kick off the All-Star Break down I-70 in Kansas City. Oscar Taveras, one of baseball's best prospects, will start in right field for the World team and bat third, while Kolten Wong will anchor the keystone and bat second for the USA team.
Taveras began the season known as MINOR LEAGUE GUY on TV, but his debut in the AA Texas League has put him near the top of prospect lists everywhere under his own name. As a 20-year-old, the Springfield Cardinals outfielder has hit .322/.372/.596, with 17 home runs and 63 RBI in 79 games--that's a year after he starred at Quad Cites, where he hit .386/.444/.574.
Kolten Wong, the Cardinals' first-rounder in the 2011 MLB Draft, hasn't slowed at all despite an aggressive promotion to AA. The 21-year-old is hitting .310/.384/.439 there, with 15 stolen bases, showing a balanced skill-set that could make him the Cardinals' first reliable starting second baseman in years.
For live updates on the Futures Game, and all the 2012 MLB All-Star Game festivities, stay tuned to SB Nation St. Louis, where Oscar Taveras will always be our favorite Minor League Guy.