D-backs honor top Minor Leaguers
Arizona names Whitesell, Valdez as best performers
PHOENIX -- The D-backs named first baseman Josh Whitesell and pitcher Cesar Valdez as their team's Minor League player and pitcher of the year on Friday.Whitesell, who was a September callup for Arizona, hit .328 with 26 home runs and 110 RBIs for Triple-A Tucson this season. The 26-year-old was claimed off waivers from the Nationals during Spring Training. Whitesell finished the season ranked seventh in the Pacific Coast League in batting average, second in RBIs and tied for fourth in hits. With the D-backs, Whitesell has gone 2-for-7 and hit his first Major League home run last weekend in Colorado. Valdez was 13-8 with a 3.14 ERA and 140 strikeouts between Class A Visalia and Double-A Mobile. He ranked in the top five in the D-backs' farm system in wins, shutouts, games started, innings pitched and strikeouts. Valdez was signed as a non-drafted free agent in 2005.
Mike Ritter is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.