MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota's Chris Colabello awoke Tuesday morning to a flurry of congratulatory text messages on his phone. What he was being congratulated for, he wasn't quite sure.
That is, until he saw one text that read, "Congrats on the MVP."
Even then, Colabello was a bit stunned as the news didn't initially sink in. Finally, though, he learned that he had been named the International League's Most Valuable Player as well as the league's Rookie of the Year. Thought currently in the major leagues, Colabello had an impressive season with Triple-A Rochester. He batted .352 -- which is still tops in the league -- with 24 home runs and 76 RBI.
Those numbers are impressive on their own, but they're even more impressive when you look at where Colabello was just two short seasons before tearing up the International League. The 29-year-old Massachusetts native spent seven years playing independent ball in the Canadian-American Association. He finally...