Looking back at the 2012 Charleston RiverDogs

Curtain Calls:
Tyler Austin (OF): Austin had a breakout season this year, hitting .320/.405/.598 in 70 games for Charleston, before getting the call up to Tampa and even making an appearance in Trenton. He had a team leading fourteen homers, along with seventeen stolen bases and five triples.

Ben Gamel (OF): Gamel hit .306/.342/.394 over 110 games. He lead the team in RBIs (61) and was second to Bichette in doubles (23).

Mason Williams (OF): After a breakout 2011, Williams continued to impress. He hit .304/.359/.489 before being promoted and then having season-ending shoulder surgery.

Gary Sanchez (C): Upon the trading of Jesus Montero, Sanchez took over the role of most exciting catching prospect for the Yankees this season. He lived up to the billing, hitting .297/.353/.517 for Charleston. He had thirteen homers, nineteen doubles and even eleven stolen bases (let’s see Montero do that…). Still just nineteen, Sanchez ended the season in Tampa, where he hit .319 over 26 games in August.…

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Rambling About Andy Pettitte

As I sit here watching the wind whip around and the skies turn into a threatening color of dark gray, I think about Andy Pettitte. Pettitte had been out for nearly three months following an ankle fracture at the hands of a Casey Kotchman line drive back in June. But if...

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Out with Nix, in with Nunez

Nunez has added some spice to the offense. He has stolen four bases in five attempts and four for four as a starter. He has an .863 OPS in September and suddenly, the Yankees’ lineup has a little spark. And Nunez has not been half bad in the field. He made one glaring error at short that may or may not have cost the Yankees a game. But other than that, he has been clean.  Suddenly, a lineup against left-handed pitchers that does not include Eduardo Nunez seems naked.

The fact is, Jayson Nix will never be anything more than a utility guy. That is no knock on Nix. That is what he is. He follows in a long line of utility guys like Miguel Cairo and others. Teams need guys like him who can play fundamentally sound baseball in a pinch and not hurt the defense when he plays. But any kind of long-term playing time exposes Nix. He is not an every day player and never will be.…

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Orioles End String of Losing Seasons; Pirates Battling To Do the Same

(The following was originally published at The Captain’s Blog; follow me on Twitter at@williamnyy23).

The Baltimore Orioles may not win the A.L. East or even make the playoffs, but if the final two weeks of the season end in disappointment, there will be at least one small consolation for the franchise. Thanks...

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Two years ago with Pettitte

The Orioles of 2010 were not a good team. Not like today. But they had a decent offense. Brian Roberts was playing well. Luke Scott was having a career year. Matt Wieters was developing into a major league catcher and hitter and Nick Markakis and Adam Jones were good young players. Plus, Buck Showalter had taken over and the Orioles were playing good baseball and ESPN was calling the team the “Flying Showalters.” All but Scott were in the starting lineup against Andy Pettitte two years ago. Like today, no one knew what to expect from Pettitte coming back after being out since July 18, 2010. Pettitte had a brilliant first half and even made the All Star team that season with an 11-2 mark. So his injury really hurt…just like it did this season.

The first inning got off to a bumpy start. Pettitte was staked to a 1-0 lead as the Orioles’ starter, Chris Tillman was very wild that day.…

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