TRAVERSE CITY — A half dozen Traverse City Pit Spitters players return for their third year.
The franchise started rolling out its 2021 roster Monday, starting with six named familiar to its fans.
Hitters Adam Proctor (catcher), Christian Faust (third base), Mario Camilletti (second base) and Jake Arnold (first base), plus pitchers Evan Gates and Cade Heil come back for their third season of Northwoods League baseball.
Camilletti, the team’s star second baseman each of the last two years, hit .348 last summer and .297 the season before, scoring 64 runs and walking 84 times in that span.
Arnold produced seven RBIs and 12 hits in 13 games last summer after 13 RBIs and 12 extra-base hits the season prior. Proctor was second on the team in home runs during the 2019 season with four.
Faust hit .270 with 21 RBIs in the 2019 NWL championship season, then added 13 RBIs last summer.
Gates served as a closer each of the last two seasons, posting a 5-2 record and seven saves with 52 strikeouts in 49.2 innings.
Heil flourished last season with a 4-0 record and 0.92 earned-run average after a 2-0 record and 1.94 ERA in 2019, striking out 36 batters over 56.2 frames in the two campaigns.
The franchise continued the release Tuesday with seven returners who will be making their second appearance in a Spitters jersey.
The team announced Crews Taylor (right field), Tito Flores (left field), Trey Yunger (shortstop), Pat Hohlfeld (pitcher), Chris Monroe (first base), John Beuckelaere (pitcher) and Dan O’Boyle (pitcher) will be back at Turtle Creek Stadium this summer.
Hohlfeld appeared in nine games last season, starting two, and ended with a perfect 5-0 record marking an impressive 0.68 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 26 innings. O’Boyle saw the mound five times last summer and struck out 21 batters in 9.2 innings of work.
Beuckelaere makes his return for a third season to TC, having played with the Great Lakes Resorters last season and the Spitters in 2019. Beuckelaere started six games for the Resorters and struc out 26 batters in 31.1 innings of work, going 1-4 in the process.
Yunger batted .300 in 17 games for the Spitters last summer, batting in six runs. Monroe started more games (30) last season than any other Spitter and hit .296 with 26 RBI, 20 runs and two home runs.
Flores was right behind Monroe in games started in 2020 with 26 and added 16 RBI and 26 runs.
Taylor averaged .200 in 2020 in 16 games, adding two doubles and a triple for the Spitters.
The Pit Spitters are releasing the remainder of their 2021 roster throughout the week.