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Rookie races real tight

From Hideki Matsui to Rocco Baldelli to Brandon Webb, rookies are playing leading roles this season.

Originally Published: September 5, 2003
By Tim Kurkjian | ESPN The Magazine

If the 2003 season were a movie, it would be The Rookie. Major league baseball is filled with rookies, including key contributors for pennant contenders. Three rookies made the All-Star team, one is headed for 100 RBI, another for 30 saves, another for 40 steals and 100 runs scored, two for 25 homers, at least one for 15 wins and one who might replace the greatest hitting catcher of all time. And we haven't even mentioned the middle relievers.

The Rookie of the Year voting should be close. ...

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