Crabbe Begins Minor League Career

Submitted by: Ron Smith - July 27th, 2009


A month after signing with the Cincinnati Reds, Tim Crabbe has made five starts for the Billings Mustangs and is settling into the life of a minor league ball player. The Mustangs are the Rookie Advance Affiliate for the Reds in Billings, Montana.

“Right now I am living in a hotel next to our field until they find me a host family,” said Crabbe who pitched at Westmont for three years. “Everything we do is planned out a day in advance. We arrive several hours before game time for early work and drills. The days can seem long at times but I am doing what I love so it is worth it and a lot of fun.”

In his last start, Crabbe pitched five innings against Missoula, holding the Osprey scoreless and allowing just one hit. Crabbe struck out seven and walked one. After five appearances, Crabbe, who can throw consistently in the low to mid 90s, has an ERA of 3.44, has registered 23 strikeouts and has issued 12 walks.

“In the minors you pitch against wood bats but everyone is a good hitter,” said the right-hander. “There are no breaks in the opposing lineup. All the hitters in the minors can hit your fastball regardless of how hard you throw.”

Drafted by the Reds in the fourteenth round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft on June 10, Crabbe weighed his options before signing with the Reds on June 25. Since then, he has been benefiting from the instruction of the minor league coaching staff.

“Our team is fortunate to have some good coaching,” reported Crabbe. “We have a couple of ex-major leaguers on our staff. The feedback from them is good – some minor adjustments here and there – but it is all generally good instruction.”

Bob Forsch, who spent most of his 16-year Major League career with the St. Louis Cardinals, serves as the Mustang’s pitching coach. Forsch threw two no-hitters, one in 1978 and the other in 1983. He ended his big league career with a record of 168-136 and a career ERA of 3.76.

Julio Garcia is in his second year as head coach for the Mustangs. Delino DeShields, a 13-year Major Leaguer with the Expos, Dodgers, Cardinals, Orioles and Cubs, serves as the Mustangs’ hitting coach.

Photo by Paul Hartman, courtesy Billings Mustangs.