ATLANTA - Rookies are a big reason the Atlanta Braves take the NL's second-best record and the fourth-best mark in the majors into the All-Star break.
Craig Kimbrel, who leads the majors with 28 saves, made the NL All-Star team as a replacement pick. The hard-throwing right-hander isn't the only rookie playing a major role in the Braves' attempt to catch Philadelphia in the NL East.
First baseman Freddie Freeman, hitting .274 with 13 homers, is emerging as a dangerous power hitter in the middle of the lineup. He had four homers in a four-game series with Colorado last week.
Another rookie, right-hander Brandon Beachy has a solid 3.21 ERA at the bottom of a strong rotation.