Walker Named To Topps All Rookie Team

Neil Walker

Pittsburgh's Neil Walker was named the second baseman on the 52nd annual Topps Major League Rookie All-Star team.

The 25-year-old Walker hit .296 (126-for-426) with 29 doubles, three triples, 12 home runs, 66 RBI and 57 runs scored in 110 games this year after being recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis on May 25.

Pittsburgh's first-round selection in the 2004 First-Year Player Draft ranked fifth among National League rookies in RBI, sixth in hits, sixth in total bases (197), fifth in slugging percentage (.462) and seventh in on-base percentage (.349). He also tied for fourth in extra base hits (44) and doubles while being named the 2010 Roberto Clemente Award winner by the Pittsburgh chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America; an award presented annually since 1973 to the team MVP.

This is the second straight year a Pirate has been named to the Topps Major League Rookie All-Star Team. Outfielder Andrew McCutchen was named to the 2009 team while also being named the Major League Rookie-of-the-Year by Baseball America and finishing fourth in voting for the MLB Jackie Robinson Rookie-of-the-Year award.

Since Topps began naming a Major League Rookie All-Star Team in 1959, Pittsburgh's Woodie Fryman (1966), Al Oliver (1969), Dave Cash (1970), Steve Nicosia (1979), Tony Pena (1981), Al Pedrique (1987), Mike Dunne (1987), Carlos Garcia (1993), Steve Cooke (1993), Jason Kendall (1996), Jose Guillen (1997), Warren Morris (1999), Craig Wilson (2001), Jason Bay (2004), Mike Gonzalez (2004) and Andrew McCutchen (2009) have also been named to the team.

The Rookie All-Stars will each have a trophy on their 2011 trading card in Topps Baseball, with Series One due out in early February.

The Major League Rookie All-Star Team is one of a number of awards programs managed by Topps to reward and encourage young ballplayers. Since 1959, Topps has annually bestowed honors on minor leaguers, baseball scouts and the Baseball Organization of the Year.

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