CHICAGO – Jose Abreu is so hot right now that he is surging into top-10 categories that don’t have anything to do with offense.
The American League’s reigning player of the month and rookie of the month now is in the top 10 of jersey sales at Fanatics.com, according to the Crain’s Chicago Business website. Sales of his No. 79 jersey have risen 200 percent, according to Crain’s, since he delivered a record-setting April.
For manager Robin Ventura, it reminds him of when former teammate Frank Thomas burst upon the scene in 1990 and nearly won an MVP award a year later.
“It’s fun for us to have a guy like him that nobody knew about last year,” Ventura said. “It makes it fun for us and being around him, he’s just a good person. He’s a humble kid and he’s a great team person.
“For our guys, you root for him and you’re happy for all of these accolades he’s getting. It’s not going to change him. He’s such a good team person, and you like to see stuff like this happen to people like him.”
Abreu's 10 home runs and 32 RBIs before May 1 were major league rookie records. His 19 extra-base hits and 71 total bases over the first month also were rookie records.