Mr. Consistency: Brett Pirtle


May 25, 2013; Hoover, AL, USA; Mississippi State Bulldogs infielder Brett Pirtle (13) forces an out at second base against the Vanderbilt Commodores during the SEC baseball tournament at the Hoover Met. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

After Monday night’s season ending loss, John Cohen called Brett Pirtle the best second baseman in Mississippi State history.

Strong statement. And it may be true.

Brett Pirtle came to MSU as an unheralded juco from Texas. He hit .222 in his final season with 28 errors.  But Coach Cohen saw something in him that most others didn’t see. Pirtle struggled during his first month of 2013 and I wondered why in the world he was still in the lineup everyday.

I soon found out why.

Pirtle is one of the most consistent, solid, hard-nosed baseball players I’ve ever seen. He plays great defense, hits every game, gets on base, has speed, plays tough and hustles on every play. I went from wanting him out of the lineup to him being one of my favorite players on the team.

If Brett Pirtle isn’t a top 10 round draft pick, there are a lot of MLB organizations making a mistake. Whoever drafts him will have themselves a ball player.

His streak of 63 straight SEC games of reaching base was incredible. Basically his first and last conference games were the only ones where he didn’t make it to first.

You never saw Pirtle without dirt on his uniform. Diving for balls, sliding hard to break up a double play and taking one for the team every chance he could.

Need a bunt? He’ll do it.

Need a stolen base? He’ll do it.

Need a clutch hit? He’ll do it.

He had a number of spectacular defensive plays as well.

Two great years at Mississippi State:

  • 2013 – .310 with 2 HR, 33 RBI, .408 OB%, 9 SB
  • 2014 – .363 with 2 HR, 31 RBI, .437 OB%, 4 SB

He finishes his career named to the all-Regional team after going 11 for 17 (.647) in four games.

I will miss Brett Pirtle, BULLDAWG.