July 27 (stats continue to update)
This year's MLB rookie class has been celebrated as one of the best in recent memory. Buster Posey, Stephen Strasburg, Carlos Santana, Jason Heyward: Not only will each of these players someday be celebrated with individual wings at the Hall of Fame, but they also will make a larger contribution to society, whether by establishing diplomatic relations with Bhutan or by ridding the world of meanness.
Amid the ongoing new-guy hype, we thought it'd be didactic to check in on the sophomore class, hailed during its 2009 rookie campaign as "marginal, in the best sense of the word" and "as toolsy as a Thermos." What'd we find? That they're having a harder go of it than mid-pubescent high-school sophomores splayed against their lockers after punishing blind-side hits from bullies.
In conclusion, the kids aren't all right, not really. If you believe more than 12 guys from last year's rookie crop project as long-term contributors, you're either incurably optimistic or related to one of them.
(Our definition of a sophomore for the purposes of this piece is "any dude who exhausted his rookie eligibility in 2009, which means more than 130 at-bats/50 innings pitched in the bigs or more than 45 days on a MLB roster, minus time on the DL and any time after the rosters plumped up on September 1.")