PORTLAND, Maine – This week, the Eastern League announced their annual award winners, and it was a list dominated by the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.
Second baseman Cavan Biggio, son of Hall of Famer Craig Biggio, received the Eastern League’s 2018 Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year awards while first-year manager John Schneider received the league’s Manager of the Year award.
Biggio concludes the regular season leading the Eastern League in home runs (26), walks (100), and came just short of the league lead in RBI (99), three behind MVP runner-up Will Craig of Altoona.
Biggio is the first player to win both awards in the same season since Darin Ruf of the Reading Fightin’ Phils (Philadelphia Phillies) in 2012.
The Mid-Season and Full-Season All-Star also set the Fisher Cats single-season record for walks, coming just short of setting new franchise marks for RBI and home run totals. He’s now ranked No. 9 among Blue Jays prospects by MLB.com, after being unranked to begin the season.
John Schneider, the youngest manager in Fisher Cats history (38) and a two-time MiLB Champion with Short-Season Vancouver and Advanced-A Dunedin, earns his first career Manger of the Year award. In his first Double-A season, the former Fisher Cats catcher led New Hampshire to its first playoff berth and winning season since 2011.
Schneider’s squad has held at least a share of first place in the Eastern Division for 120 out of 136 games this season, and has paced the Eastern League with a franchise record .272 batting average. New Hampshire’s 40 road wins are tied for the most in Fisher Cats history, and they’ve used a franchise record 31 different pitchers this season.
Previous Fisher Cats to earn Manager of the Year honors include Sal Fasano (2011), and Mike Basso (2004), with New Hampshire winning the pennant in both years.
New Hampshire has also had two previous MVPs, Travis d’Arnaud (2011) and Adam Lind (2006), and no prior Rookies of the Year.
Promoted Fisher Cat third baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. placed third on the MVP ballot and third on the Rookie of the Year ballot while Fisher Cat shortstop Bo Bichette placed second in Rookie of the Year voting.