TigsTown Awards: West Michigan Whitecaps

The West Michigan Whitecaps had a number of standout performers in 2006; which one would expect from a team that was crowned league champs. Who took home the prospect of the year awards?

West Michigan Player of the Year: Infielder Michael Hollimon
At the completion of yet another season, Michael Hollimon has come away with one of the highest awards he can win. After being named the Mid Continent Player of the Year to close his collegiate career with Oral Roberts in 2005, Hollimon was named the TigsTown Oneonta Player of the Year in his professional debut later that summer. Now, Hollimon takes home the same honor for his spectacular play for the West Michigan Whitecaps. Hollimon is finally turning impressive tools into impressive performance, including finishing the season with 29 doubles, 13 triples, 15 homeruns, and 19 steal. His .278/.384/.501 line has certainly put him on the map within the Tigers organization, and it should translate to some national attention as well. With a strong spring, Hollimon could leapfrog the struggling Brent Dlugach, and head straight to AA-Erie, where he would finally receive a challenge more suitable for his age and performance.

West Michigan Pitcher of the Year: Reliever Anthony Claggett
Despite being relatively new to pitching, having just started pitching competitively in the spring of 2005, Claggett has emerged as a dominating reliever. Anthony appeared in 51 games for the ‘Caps in 2006, and he was perfect in nearly all of them, allowing only 6 earned runs all season. That impressive run left him with a 0.90 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, and nearly a 3:1 strikeout to walk ratio. Claggett was named the TigsTown West Michigan Pitcher of the Month in June after posting a 0.00 ERA over 10 appearances, and was even rewarded with a 1-game trip to Toledo. In that brief AAA stint, he logged one inning with a hit, a walk, and two strikeouts. After an injury to West Michigan closer Orlando Perdomo, Anthony eagerly stepped into the late inning role, and posted 14 saves down the stretch for the playoff bound ‘Caps. Claggett should continue gaining further pitching experience with the Lakeland Tigers in 2007, but continued impressive showings could have him moving up the ladder quickly.

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