DETROIT, Mich. (June 7, 2012) — Former Alexandria Beetles catcher Bryan Holaday became the fourth Northwoods League player from the 2010 draft to make his Major League Baseball debut. The Detroit Tigers called up Holaday on Wednesday when the team lost their starting catcher Alex Avila to a hamstring injury. Holaday went 1-for-4 with a run scored in his first career start Wednesday night in a 9-6 loss to the Cleveland Indians. Holaday is expected to see regular time at catcher while Avila is out and was back in the starting lineup in the Tigers game Thursday afternoon.
Holaday played with Alexandria in the summer of 2008. The Tigers drafted Holaday in the sixth round of the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft out of Texas Christian University. Since 2010, Holaday has worked his way through the minor league system for Detroit. In 2011, Holaday hit seven home runs and recorded 42 RBI for the Double-A Erie SeaWolves. Holaday is known for his defense behind the dish, throwing out 15 of 39 would-be base stealers for a caught stealing rate of 38 percent.
In 2008, Holaday had a .288 batting average and hit five home runs for the Beetles while also having 24 RBI. Holaday also drew 26 walks and the plate and scored 30 runs. The Dallas, Texas native played 24 of those games at the catcher position for Alexandria. His best game came on June 14, 2008, when he went 3-for-5, hitting a home run and recording seven RBI.
Holaday becomes the ninth former Alexandria Beetles member to play in the Major Leagues, joining New York Mets outfielder Lucas Duda, St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Allen Craig, Cleveland Indians pitcher Jeremy Accardo, Chicago Cubs pitcher Casey Coleman, and Detroit Tigers infielder Danny Worth as the former Alexandria Beetles to play in the majors in 2012. Holaday is the 92nd Northwoods League alum to make it to the big leagues and the 39th to appear in a game in 2012.
The Northwoods League has more teams, plays more games, and draws more fans than any other Summer Collegiate Baseball League in North America. The League has 16 teams in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Michigan, and Ontario.