Yasmany Tomas is a legitimate Rookie of the Year candidate

May 21, 2015, 4:25 PM | Updated: 4:25 pm

He just came off his sixth consecutive multi-hit game. He is batting a remarkable .349 and playing some outstanding defense at third base. So now is as good a time as any. Yasmany Tomas, the 24-year-old Cuban that the Arizona Diamondbacks signed to a 6-year, $68.5 million dollar free agent contract in the offseason, is a legitimate Rookie of the Year Candidate.

In what is shaping up to be a sensational rookie class in the National League, Tomas is either right at or near the top of the heap when it comes to top rookies. His power and RBI numbers are not great yet — he just hit his first and only home run last week in Philadelphia — but that average and his defense have stood out.

Now becoming the first Diamondback to win Rookie of the Year will not be easy. This is a great class and the competition is fierce.

Joc Pederson, Dodgers – .236 with 10 home runs and 21 RBI

Alex Guerrero, Dodgers – .311 with six home runs and 16 RBI

Kris Bryant, Cubs – .291 with four home runs and 25 RBI

Carlos Frias, Dodgers – 3-1 record with a 2.55 ERA

Chris Heston, San Francisco – 3-3 record with a 3.72 ERA

Now there is still 3/4 of the season left, but 40 games into the season is a good sample size to gauge the rookies. Tomas was called up on April 15 to be a pinch-hitter off the bench. On April 19 he got his first major league hit — a pinch-hit single in a 5-1 win over the Giants. That same day, third baseman Jake Lamb went on to disabled list, opening up a spot for Tomas to play regularly. And he has taken advantage ever since, giving manager Chip Hale a good problem to have when Lamb returns in a couple of weeks.

So even with only playing in 28 of 40 games, you can see why Arizona thought so highly of Tomas. In 2012, Wade Miley finished second to Bryce Harper in the NL Rookie of the Year voting. That is the closest any D-back has ever come. If Tomas can keep up this pace, he may just have a chance to bring home the hardware.

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Yasmany Tomas is a legitimate Rookie of the Year candidate