ICYMI: Bigbie Named NWL MVP!
On Saturday, the Northwoods League announced that the Mallards’ own Justice Bigbie was named the 2019 Northwoods League Most Valuable Player.
Bigbie hails from Western Carolina and is in his second season with the Mallards. In 2019, Bigbie crushed opposing pitching and is hitting .349, the sixth-best batting average in the entire NWL. The slugger is at the top of the other two Triple Crown categories, launching 12 home-runs and driving in 70 runs.
“It’s been great,” Mallards’ manager Donnie Scott said. “Pete Alonso-like. That’s all I can say…it’s very comparable. This guy’s been hot all year and I just hope it continues.”
After a standout year at Western Carolina, Bigbie’s accolade-filled 2019 continues. He was named the Southern Conference Player of the Year for the Catamounts, and is now the first Mallard to win season MVP since New York Met Pete Alonso took home the honors for Madison in 2014.
Bigbie is at the top of most offensive charts in the NWL, leading the league in hits (96) and total bases (150). He is also in the top five in extra-base hits with 29, and boasts the fourth-best slugging percentage in the league at a .545 mark.
From June 17 to July 20, Bigbie recorded a hit in 29 consecutive games, claiming the second-longest hitting streak in Northwoods League history and the longest since 1995.
In July, Bigbie along with eight of his Mallards teammates were selected to the 2019 NWL All-Star Game in Waterloo, Iowa. In the mid-summer classic, Bigbie paced the offense and was named the game’s MVP after blasting two home runs against the top pitching in the league.
Bigbie was also selected by Major League scouts to the 2019 Major League Dream’s Showcase held at the Duck Pond last week.
Theo Denlinger was also named a Postseason All-Star for the Mallards. The flamethrower from Bradley University has been a dominant closer for Madison and racked up 12 saves, the second-best total in the NWL.
“He’s been consistent,” Scott said. “He’s been very good for us late in the game, that’s not always an easy situation either.”
Scott also credited reliever Leon Davidson (North Carolina A&T) for his tremendous work in late-game situations to set up Denlinger.
In addition to the saves, Denlinger has three wins. His ERA is anchored at 1.75 in 25.2 innings of work this summer.
The Mallards are now in postseason play and are taking on Wisconsin Rapids in the first round of the playoffs. The games will be played on Monday at Witter Field at 7:05pm, Tuesday at the Duck Pond at 6:35, and if necessary, Wednesday back at Witter Field. Tickets for Tuesday’s home game are available here: https://madison-mallards.northwoodsleague.tv/SingleGame/Tickets/SelectSeats/872