From Another Camp: Williamsport Crosscutters
The Class-A Short Season affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies resides in the quiet town of Williamsport, Pennsylvania. This is where many past and present stars of the game got their start, including names like Jose Bautista, Rhys Hoskins, and World Series MVP Steve Pearce. This summer, I have the opportunity to intern with the Crosscutters, and last night was the first game of the season. The Cutters fell to the State College Spikes by a score of 4-3, stranding the tying run on 3rd base in the bottom of the 9th inning. Despite the loss, the game was enjoyable for me because of the interaction with the fans. Because I work in the box office during the day and at the front gate once games begin, fans remember me selling them tickets from hours or days prior. It’s nice to be recognized! For the most part, our supporters come from the Phillies and Pirates fan bases, although I did see an Aaron Judge and a Gary Sanchez jersey.
The two things that stood out to me the most from my view at the front gate were the Josh Gibson Homestead Grays jersey and the Ted Williams .406 hat. Seeing fans wearing these articles of clothing made me realize just how important the game of baseball, and the history of the game, is to the city of Williamsport. After all, this is the birthplace of Little League Baseball and where countless baseball dreams have been realized, including first baseman Steve Pearce. Pearce was selected by the Pirates in the eighth round of the 2005 MLB draft, back when the Crosscutters were affiliated with Pittsburgh’s club. Shortly thereafter, he was assigned to Williamsport. In his first season of professional baseball, fresh of his senior year at the University of South Carolina, Pearce batted .301 with seven home runs and 52 RBI across 72 games. Those 52 runs he drove in that season still stand as a Crosscutters single-season-record. I have always enjoyed the Minor League Baseball experience, and this is certainly no exception. What are your favorite Minor League Baseball memories? Please feel free to share in the comments below.
(Photo Credit: Adam Davis, EPA)