5. Yulieski Gurriel, 1B, Houston Astros
Hardly a rookie at the rising age of 32, Yulieski Gurriel will turn 33 in June. For all intents and purposes though, Gurriel still holds rookie status and is thus eligible for the award, and a solid candidate at that given his vast experience in professional leagues prior coming to the United States.
Across 15 international seasons, Gurriel had a .997 OPS with 250 home runs, 1,018 RBIs and over 1,500 hits.
After being one of the more premier players that had not defected from Cuba to the United States over the years, Gurriel played in 36 games with Houston at the end of the 2016 season. Hitting .262 to go along with three home runs and 15 runs batted in, Gurriel will man first base for the Astros, according to Rotowire MLB.
Gurriel enters a lineup that now has an infield capable of playing itself to be best in the AL West. His experience and reputation professionally before coming to the United States, along with his age in his rookie season, gives him an outside chance at being AL Rookie of the Year.