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Braves' top prospect Heyward named minor league player of year


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By CARROLL ROGERS

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Baseball America named Braves outfield prospect Jason Heyward the minor league player of the year Friday. He is only the second Brave to win the award, which dates back to 1981, the year Baseball America was founded. Andruw Jones won it in 1995 and 1996.

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“When you consider his ability and his actual performance, especially what he’s done at higher levels, and the power he showed as a notorious pitcher’s park (in Myrtle Beach) ... he had a standout season,” Baseball America editor John Manuel said. “His advanced plate discipline, combined with his youthfulness and the difficulty of those leagues ñ the Carolina League, the Southern League, they are very difficult for a 19 to 20-year-old - he made it look easy.”

Heyward has hit .323 with 17 home runs, 25 doubles and 63 RBIs combined for Class A Myrtle Beach, Class AA Mississippi and Class AAA Gwinnett.

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