Whitecaps Update: 2011 Mid-Season Report
Ok, I’ve been slacking a bit on my Whitecaps coverage, but at least I’ve been to more games this season that the last few years, so that more fun that’s just reading the stats. The Whitecaps are off to a solid second half, so here’s hoping they can stay hot and continue their playoff streak. Inserted are photos from the ‘Caps recent series with the Fort Wayne TinCaps from the Grand Rapids Press. Happy 4th of July everyone….
First Half: The Whitecaps really struggled early this season, with such a young roster, but were able to battle back a bit. They ended the first half 32-37, which was good for 6th in the eight team division. What’s impressive, is that they went through a rough 12 game losing streak early in the season, so being able to recover from that is a positive sign.
Second Half: West Michigan is off to a solid start in the second half of the season, going 7-4, which is good enough for second place in the East one game behind the Dayton Dragons. Outfielder Jeff Rowland is off to a great start in this second stint. He’s batting .400 with four doubles, six walks, and a .600 OBP. The pitching staff is also getting the job done for the Whitecaps. Their starters have had seven quality starts in the first 10 games and are 3-1 with a 2.22 ERA. The team has gone 17-8 since June 3 and are almost at .500 for the entire season.
Team Leaders: Rookie sensation Nick Castellanos is emerging as a team leader, despite having a slow start to his first full pro season. He’s leading the ‘Caps in batting average with .306, RBI’s with 48, and SLG% with .441. James Robbins is leading the team in home runs with 10, and Luis Castillo is tops with a .369 OBP. On the mound, Kevin Eichhorn leads the team in three categories of his own: wins with 6, SO with 68, and a 1.17 WHIP. Antonio Cruz has the best ERA with 3.29, and Bruce Rondon is tops with 15 saves.
All Stars: Representing the Whitecaps in this year Midwest League All-Star game were Bruce Rondon, Rob Brantly, and Hernan Perez. Rondon pitched a scoreless 0.2 of an inning with one strikeout. Brantly went 0-3, while Perez went 0-2 in the East’s 8-3 loss to the West. In this season’s MLB All-Star game, catcher Alex Avila of the Tigers has been voted in as the starter. He’ll be joined on the American League roster by Matt Joyce (TB) and may face the National League’s Jair Jurrjens (ATL) on the mound.Photos courtesy of the Grand Rapids Press
Happy for Avila… he deserves it. And these pics are great! Happy for the update.
Great pictures! We went to a Frontier League game the other night to watch the Southern Illinois Miners. Kids enjoyed it!
They went through a 12 game losing streak and still finished the first half within striking range of .500? That’s impressive.
Jeff-I’m happy for Avila, too. You never know if just another Matt Nokes, or not, so being a starter should be a total thrill.
Ron-I would love to hit a Miners game. I hear the stadium is really unique. We saw the Beach Bums in Frontier League action last week and had a good time.
Catherine-They have a young team, but I guys they’re starting to catch on. They’re contending now in the secon half.
Thanks for checking in…
Great pics and congratulations to Alex Avila. I think he was one of the spot on choices. Will the White Caps experience a huge roster shift in the second half like some minor league teams do as the players move up and down levels or are they likely to keep the same core group through to the end?
Kristen-I’m happy for Avila, too. Could be a once in a lifetime experience. The Whitecaps on recieve one ’11 draft pick, but got some different players once the other were put into the farm system. I hope they can keep their playoff steak alive.