Brian Bixler - Age 29 - Just over 1 year of MLB Service Time
How he became a Nat: Was "purchased" by the Nats from the Pirates in August of 2010 - essentially a trade for cash.
The Raw Numbers:
Games - 79
ABs - 94
AVG - .205
Runs - 9
RBI - 2
OF UZR/150 - 24.0
WAR - -0.2
Key Stat: 6. This is the number of positions that Brian Bixler played in the 2011 season (OF x3, 1B, SS, and 3B). His job was not to light the world on fire at the dish (obviously), but he was meant to be a solid defender that could come in with the game on the line. He did just that, right around replacement level.
Best Game: Without question it would be June 24th in interleague action against the Chicago White Sox. Bixler came in for Jerry Hairston (LF) in the 8th inning during a double switch. The game was solidly in the Nats' hands, leading 3-0 going into the 9th - until Drew Storen blew a save and the game went to extras; Bixler would play a massive role in bonus time. He came up in the 12th with 2 on and 2 outs and hit a double to right that would give the Nats a 5-4 lead; which Clippard would go on to give up in the bottom half of the inning - tie ball game. Bixler next came up in the 14th with 2 outs and no one on. He singled, stole 2nd and scored what would be the game winner on an E6.
Worst Game: July 31st against the Mets. Bixler went 0 for 5 with 2 groundouts, 2 bunt ground-outs, and a strikeout. The Nats would win the game despite his best efforts to the contrary.
CapBall Grade: Solid C. He did exactly what was expected of him; nothing more, nothing less. He had a few good games, a few not-so-good games while playing some solid defense whenever called upon.
2012 Nats Status: Well, the Nats tried to slip Bixler through waivers to clear up some room on the 40-man and paid the price, losing Bixler to the Astros. So I would say that the odds of him making the Nats next year would be slim to none.
Are you going to miss Bixler next year? Are you ready for this fools-errand of a series to be over? Post your thoughts in the comments section!