GARY, IN. 12-3-2010 – Infielder Chris Carrara today became the second member of the Gary SouthShore RailCats to sign on for the inaugural season in the American Association returning for his third season in a ‘Cats uniform.
Carrara, 25, had a very solid season for the RailCats in 2010 despite missing significant time with a wrist injury. While it seemed every RailCats player struggled in the month of May (as evidenced by the .197 team batting average for the month), Carrara led the team with a .276 batting average. After appearing in only 13 games in the month of July, Carrara was able to put the injury behind him en route to being arguably the most reliable hitter in Tagert’s lineup as the RailCats made the push to the playoffs. Carrara, who plays multiple infield positions, carried the RailCats offense at times with his .350 batting average for month of August.
Carrara played in only 36 regular season games in 2009 but still managed to play at least six times at second base, third base and shortstop, and also made a cameo at first base. The Charlotte native made the most of his playing time in 2009, however, legging out three triples, driving in 15 runs, stealing nine bases, drawing 10 walks and five hit-by-pitches, and posting a .416 on-base percentage in only 98 regular season at bats. The speedy Carrara also made his mark in Game One of the 2009 Northern League Championship Series, drawing one of his two playoff starts and scoring the game-tying run in the fifth inning before driving in the game-winning run with a single in the seventh.
Drafted in the 30th round of the 2007 Major League Entry Draft by the New York Yankees, Carrara played sparingly that summer before landing a full-time job with the Frontier League’s Washington Wild Things in 2008. That season Carrara hit .285 in 74 games and boasted a .401 on-base percentage to go along with 19 stolen bases and just 11 errors in the field while splitting time between second and third base.
Born in Pittsburgh, Carrara attended high school in Charlotte and then played four years for Division I Winthrop where he was a three-time All-Big South Conference selection. Carrara hit at least .320 three times in four college seasons and had his best year as a junior in 2006, batting .364 with 25 extra-base hits and a whopping 33 stolen bases. In his college career, Carrara piled up 103 stolen bases and walked 143 times against just 108 strikeouts.
Carrara is the second position player signed to a 2011 contract by the RailCats, joining outfielder Mike Massaro. Those two will be part of an at least 28-man squad when the RailCats open Spring Training on April 30 at U. S. Steel Yard.
Don’t forget to stop by U. S. Steel Yard this Saturday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. for Rusty’s Second Annual Holiday Steel “Yard Sale.” The RailCats will be selling merchandise, apparel, game used items, and much more at the lowest prices of the year.