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Sunday, March 20, 2022

Mike Reitzel had to wait after strong first spring; Saw three pro seasons, made high-A

Former University of Hawaii player Mike Reitzel had a productive spring, he told The Honolulu Star-Bulletin in early April 1989, but he'd still have to wait to take the field.

That's because the Rangers simply didn't have room for him then on a minor league squad.

"They just have a lot of pitchers," Reitzel told The Star-Bulletin then. "They are giving the guys with more money the first shot. I'll be assigned when the short season starts. I had a good spring, only gave up one run in 12 innings."

Reitzel eventually hit the field at high-A Port Charlotte, for his second pro season. He saw time in just one more campaign.

Reitzel's career began in 1988, taken by the Rangers in the 23rd round out of Northeastern Oklahoma State University. He'd been taken by the Cubs two years earlier out of Hawaii, but did not sign.

Reitzel started with the Rangers at single-A Gastonia. He went 4-3, with a 3.81 ERA over 19 outings, four starts.

He then moved to Port Charlotte for 1989. He went 5-2 there, with a 3.76 ERA over 21 outings, five starts. He also picked up one save, in a July game where he picked up two outs.

That September in 1989, Reitzel got a playoff win as no one reached second over his first six innings, The Fort Myers News-Press wrote. He gave up a home run in the seventh and got pulled.

"I wanted to stay in there. I wasn't tired or anything," Reitzel told The News-Press. "But I realized that we needed somebody fresh in there."

Reitzel is then credited as playing 1990 between Port Charlotte and high-A Miami. He went 5-9 on the year, with a 3.80 ERA in 26 outings, 15 starts, to end his career.

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:3,866
Made the Majors:1,294-33.5%
Never Made Majors:2,572-66.5%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:528
10+ Seasons in the Minors:324

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