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Best of 2010-2018: Melbourne Aces
Who makes the Aces' best ABL line-up?
04/20/2018 10:00 AM ET
 

Plenty of big league talent and exciting prospects have taken to the field for the Melbourne Aces during the eight seasons of the ABL.

But which ones make the cut in the Aces' best team?

The team at theabl.com.au has combined their heads and come up with our best Melbourne lineup.

It was no easy task but we have narrowed the talent pool down, completing a line-up card with nine hitters and starting, relief and closing pitcher.

Selection is based on what players achieved during their time in the ABL and there are no restrictions on imports.

To level the playing field between long term players and one-year imports, we have given more weight to players' best single-season output.

Here is theabl.com.au's best Melbourne team:

 

1. Logan Moon - CF

Moon led the Aces with 61 hits during his sole ABL campaign in 2015/2016. He hit .300 with nine double, four triples and five home runs. His 24 RBIs were third best at Melbourne, while his 12 stolen bases were a team-high. Moon impressed at Melbourne Ballpark, batting .340 in home games.

 

2. Ronald Acuna - RF

Acuna made quite the impression at Melbourne despite featuring for just half a season. The Atlanta Braves top prospect hit .375 in 20 games as the Aces got off to a red-hot start. Acuna hit five doubles and two homers, racking up 13 RBIs. He also stole 13 bases and made just one error defensively.

Honourable mentions: Andrew Russell

 

3. Roman Collins - LF

Collins finished with the third-best average (.336) in the ABL during the 2016/2017 season as the Aces finished the regular season in top spot. He finished with 49 hits, including 11 doubles and three home runs, and drove in 22 runs.

 

4. Kellin Deglan - 1B

Until the recently completed season, Deglan held the record for most homers in a single ABL season. The left-handed hitter went deep 16 times during the 2011/2015 season, racking up 99 total bases in 42 appearances. All up, he hit .287 with a slugging percentage of .631. Deglan's 36 RBIs led Melbourne and put him second behind Canberra's Jack Murphy (37) overall.

Honourable mentions: Jared Schlehuber

 

5. Ryan Casteel - C

Casteel edged out Allan de San Miguel for the start at backstop courtesy of a 36-RBI season in Melbourne. The catcher hit .343 with 10 doubles, a triple and 11 home runs during the 2013/2014 season. Casteel's batting average topped the ABL. His 102 total bases were second in the league, as was his RBI tally.

Honourable mentions: Allan de San Miguel

 

6. Brad Harman - 2B

Harman is Melbourne's all-time home run leader, going deep 39 times in 228 games. His best tally came in 2011/2012 when he homered 15 times, with 11 coming at the cosy confines of Melbourne Showgrounds. Harman finished the season hitting .305 with 32 RBIs and 100 total bases.

 

7. Justin Huber - DH

Huber racked up more than 25 RBIs in each of the opening two seasons in the relaunched ABL. He hit .348 during the 2011/2012 season - fifth best in the league - and drove in 26 runs with six homers.

 

8. Josh Davies - 3B

Davies played 235 games for the Aces across seven seasons for the Aces and was a .266 career hitter. He drove in a career-high 24 runs in the inaugural season, homering seven times and averaging .307. He also hit nine doubles.

 

9. Darryl George - SS

George, a seven-year veteran of the ABL, was one of Melbourne's best players during the 2017/2018 season. He recorded career highs for batting average (.327) and home runs 11, while his 30 RBIs fell three shy of his 2015/2016 tally despite playing nine fewer games. George was a rock defensively at shortstop and was rewarded with the league's Gold Glove.

Honourable mentions: Tanner Vavra

 

SP - Mark Hamburger

Hamburger was electric in his first season in the ABL en route to the Pitching Champion award. The right-hander led the ABL with an equal all-time high 86 strikeouts, going 5-1 with a 1.90 ERA. He worked two complete games, including one complete game shutout as the Aces finished top. Hamburger finished with a WHIP of 0.99 before struggling to replicate the same form during the 2017/2018 campaign.

Honourable mentions: Matthew Larkins, Lewis Thorpe

 

RP - Josh Tols

Tols made the switch from Adelaide to Melbourne two seasons ago and has proved a valuable asset for the Aces. He compiled a 0.91 ERA in his first season with Melbourne before being rolled out as a starter for most of the 2017/2018 campaign. In 2016/2017 he was ever reliable out of the bullpen, keeping opposition hitters to a .147 average and not giving up a homer in 29 2/3 innings.

Honourable mentions: Zach Arneson

 

CP - Brett Zawacki

Zawacki holds Melbourne's single-season saves record after converting seven of eight chances during the 2013/2014 season. The right-hander finished with a 1-1 record and 1.75 ERA in 19 appearances. He struck out 35 in 25.2 innings, keeping hitters to a .208 batting average.

Honourable mentions: Peter Moylan

 

 

How did we go? Who would you have in your best Melbourne Aces team?

Stay tuned for the Best of Perth Heat next Friday.

This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.