Kary Bridges

From BR Bullpen

William Karon Bridges

BR Minors page

Biographical Information[edit]

Infielder Kary Bridges was drafted by the Houston Astros in the 10th round of the 1993 amateur draft out of the University of Mississippi. He had a long minor league career with a number of different organizations, with most of it being spent in AAA, but he never played in the majors.

He played his first season in 1993 with the Quad Cities River Bandits of the Midwest League, the year the team saw its venerable ballpark in Davenport, IA, John O'Donnell Stadium, be under water for a spell due to flooding of the Mississippi River. He hit .281 in 65 games, then returned to the same team in 1994, batting .302/.358/..371 in 117 games, with 66 runs scored. In 1995, he was in the AA Texas League with the Jackson Generals, where he hit .301/.372/.395 in 118 games, scoring 56 runs.

In 1996, he started the season in Jackson then was promoted to AAA for the first time after 87 games, logging another 42 games with the Tucson Toros of the Pacific Coast League. It was another good season, as he hit a combined .322/.375/.410 in the 129 games. It's not clear why he did not even get a brief look in the Show, since he was clearly a very good minor league hitter, but the opportunity never came, so he settled into being a AAA lifer. In 1997, he started the season with the New Orleans Zephyrs, the Astros' new AAA affiliate, hitting .172 in 23 games. He then found himself in the Pittsburgh Pirates organizaton for the rest of the season, appearing both with the Carolina Mudcats of the Southern League, where he batted .336 in 66 games, and then with the AAA Calgary Cannons where he hit .263 in 33 games.

That year was the beginning of the nomadic phase of his career, which continued in 1998 when he was in the Chicago Cubs system, again appearing at both the AA and AAA levels, with the West Tenn Diamond Jaxx and Iowa Cubs respectively, hitting a combined .263/.315/.318 in 112 games. In 1999, he started off with Iowa then moved to the Texas Rangers system after 10 games, finishing the year with the Oklahoma RedHawks, where he played 75 games. He just .122 at Iowa, but a roaring .343 in Oklahoma City, also slugging .490. But alas, still no call from the big league club. In 2000, he was with the Montreal Expos' AAA affiliate, the Ottawa Lynx, and continued to hit well, batting .338 in 61 games. In 2001 and 2002, he was with the New York Yankees and participated in spring training with the major league team. But when the regular season rolled around, he spent both years back in familiar territory in AAA, this time with the Columbus Clippers. He continued to do what he did best - hit for average - batting .297 in 109 games in 2001, but that was the height of the so-called "steroids era" and teams had little use for singles hitters. In 2002, his batting average slipped a bit, to .263 in 134 games and he was out of baseball the next year. In over 1000 minor league games (1052 to be exact) over 10 seasons, his batting average was .296, with over half of his games being played at the AAA level.

In his penultimate season, playing for Columbus against the Toledo Mud Hens on September 2, 2001, he was at the center of a very unusual play. With runners on first and second, he laid down a sacrifice bunt which was fielded by Toledo catcher Dave Lindstrom. Lindstrom thought about throwing to third base but changed his mind, and then his throw to first went high above the first baseman's head, went through the bullpen all the way to the fence. By the time the right fielder could recover the ball, all three baserunners had scored, and Lindstrom was charged with an extremely rare four-base error. Thanks in part to the strange play, Columbus won the game, 11-7.

Following his playing career, he went into coaching st the high school level, with Water Valley High School and St. Martin High School, both in his home state of Mississippi.

Related Sites[edit]