COMSTOCK PARK, MI - The Detroit Tigers and the West Michigan Whitecaps announced today that they have agreed to a two-year extension of their current Player Development Contract. The agreement will keep Tigers prospects playing at Fifth Third Ballpark through the 2022 season.
Tigers Vice President of Player Development Dave Littlefield said that moving forward with the Whitecaps was an easy decision. "We're thrilled to extend our Player Development Contract with the West Michigan Whitecaps. The Whitecaps have provided our Tigers minor leaguers with a top-notch environment for the past 22 seasons, and we look forward to continuing our strong relationship into an exciting future for the organization."
Since becoming a Tigers affiliate in 1997, the Whitecaps have won five Midwest League Championships (1998, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2015) and have seen hundreds of prospects and current stars play in West Michigan, including Brandon Inge, Alex Avila, Don Kelly, Francisco Cordero, Robert Fick, Cameron Maybin, Jeff Weaver, Fernando Rodney, Matt Joyce, Eugenio Suarez, Corey Knebel, Devon Travis, Nicholas Castellanos and Joe Jimenez.
The two organizations last renewed in January of 2015 with a two-year extension that continued the relationship through the end of the 2020 season.
Whitecaps Vice President and General Manager Jim Jarecki said that the Whitecaps relationship with the Tigers has been outstanding since its 1997 start. "We have had a great relationship with the Tigers. We've seen many great players come through here and have had several great teams." Jarecki said. "They have also understood and have been extremely supportive of our community efforts. We are excited to be extending our Player Development Contract to 2022. This extension assures Whitecaps fans of seeing the best future talent of the Detroit Tigers."
The Whitecaps next homestand begins this Saturday when the Dayton Dragons come to town from Saturday, August 4 through Monday, August 6. Individual tickets for these and all other Whitecaps home games are on sale at www.whitecapsbaseball.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.