Starting with the 2007 awards, the TigsTown name will be removed from the name of the award. Instead of the TigsTown Minor League Pitcher of the Year award, it will now be known as the Brian Bluhm Minor League Pitcher of the Year award. The TigsTown Minor League Player of the Year award will now be called the Ryan DeWitt Minor League Player of the Year award.
Brian Blum was a lifelong Tiger fan, being born in Iowa but moving to metro Detroit as a youngster. He remained a diehard fan up until his untimely death, when he was one of the victims in the shootings on the Virginia Tech campus. Bluhm was 25 years old at the time of his passing.
Ryan DeWitt was a diehard Tiger fan as well, showing his allegiance to the Lakeland Tigers (now Flying Tigers). Born and raised in Lakeland, he followed every baseball game played at the Lakeland complex, from Detroit Tiger spring training games down to rookie level Gulf Coast League games. Ryan was also a Lakeland Tiger bat boy. He was 14 years old when he passed away.
TigsTown.com wishes to honor the memories of these two fine young men by naming their most notable awards after them. It is the hope that each year the award is handed out, Tiger fans will remember the legacy of these two young men and their passion for the Detroit Tigers.
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