TRAVERSE CITY — Sean Gusrang was an infielder by trade.
Until last season, that is.
Gusrang switched to right field in order to crack the Traverse City Beach Bums lineup and the move paid dividends — for himself and the team.
The 23-year-old had a breakout season, hitting .266 with 15 home runs and 50 RBIs.
“I had never played outfield until last year,” the former Seton Hall player said. “When Banger (manager Gregg Langbehn) asked if I could play out there, I said, ‘Of course.’ I wasn’t going to say no. It was fun. I welcomed the challenge. I just like to play. It doesn’t matter where I’m at. Luckily, it worked for everybody.”
Gusrang played sparingly in 2011 once he joined the team in mid-season after his college career ended.
“I knew coming in that first year I probably wasn’t going to get a lot of playing time,” he said. “There were older players, good players ahead of me. I was pretty excited last year to come in and compete for a spot. I just took it from there. That’s what everybody does — look for opportunity. You have to produce when you get that chance.”
He did, providing the Beach Bums with a lethal bat in the bottom third of the order. His 15 homers tied him for 10th in the Frontier League. Additionally, he was hit by 18 pitches and he walked 53 times, resulting in a .406 on-base percentage that was also 10th in the league.
Gusrang proved steady in the field, too.
“He did a good job for us last season,” Langbehn said. “And he’s looked good out there this spring. Honestly, you can put him anywhere. It’s a credit to him. It was a situation last year where we couldn’t keep him out of the lineup.”