The Best for 2005 Are Honored

VERO BEACH, Fla.- The Dodgers paused in therir preparation for the 2006 season to salute the top performances for 2005 in a special ceremony Friday before the Dodger-Marlin game. Minor League Editor Bill Shelley and Editor Tot Holmes made the presentations.

Honored on the Holman Stadium field before the night game against the Florida Marlins were the recepients of the player, pitcher, rookie and scout of the year awards presented annually by LA and Dodger Dugout publication. This year, the plaques went to:

Third baseman Andy LaRoche, who hit 21 home runs for Vero Beach, then went on to hit nine more for Jacksonville. His total of 30 led the organization as did his 162 total bases and 94 runs batted in. He received the Bill Schweppe ward as Player of the Year after being saluted as Rookie of the Year in 2004.

Righthander Chad Billingsley, who with Jacksonville led the organization in wins with 13, innings pitched with 146 and strikeouts with 162 and who threw seven innings of no-hit ball against Birmimgham in the Southern League playoffs. He was the winner of the Ben Wade award as Pitcher of the Year for the second straight season.

Outfielder Anthony Raglani got into only six games in 2004 because of a hand injury so was still a rookie in 2005 . Playing for Vero Beach, he hit .289 with 19 home runs and 79 runs batted in. He was the winner of the Guy Wellman award as Rookie of the Year.

Clair Rierson, who covers the Mid-Atlantic region for the Dodgers, was chosen as Scout of the Year. Among those he signed were Steve Schmoll, who made the Dodgers last year , then was traded to the Mets and Raglani along with Justin Orenduff, Steve Johnson, and Kalen Gearheart among others.

Jacksonville players also received their rings for winning the Southern League title as part of the ceremony.