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June 24, 2012 at 8:04 AM

MLB New Englanders

Last August we took a detailed look at 2011 major leaguers from New England. We New Englanders undoubtedly enjoy watching our own homegrown players succeed -- as long as it’s not in Yankees pinstripes. So I came up with a list of 21 New England-born players who appeared in the majors in 2011. But several of those players didn’t have any real connection to New England other than being born here (having moved elsewhere early in their lives). Also, the nature of the list required a handful of other New Englanders, who just happened to have been born elsewhere, to be excluded. 

So I’ll take a slightly different slant this year – here’s a list of 23 players who went to high school in New England and have appeared in the major leagues in 2012 (sorted by career WAR – Wins Above Replacement). 

1. Carlos Pena, 1B, Tampa Bay
Haverhill High School, 1995 (Haverhill, Mass.) 

Pena moved to Massachusetts from the Dominican Republic at the age of 12, and spent the next six years living in Haverhill. The 34-year-old also has a few other New England ties, being a Northeastern University alumnus and having played for both Boston and Pawtucket in 2006. Pena has 267 career home runs and a .480 career slugging percentage. 

Check out the full column on ESPN Boston.