Gehrig Octavio might be somewhere else if he was taller than the 5-foot-7. Perhaps he would playing in Division I or the minors?
He is happy with his life at the little Baptist school in Tigersville, South Carolina. Octavio is a troublemaking second baseman, top of the order hitter for the North Greenville Crusaders, an NCAA tournament-bound team.
Landon Powell, Crusaders’ coach, and a former major-leaguer who was the catcher when Dallas Brayden threw his game in 2010 for the Oakland Athletics, would be agree with the assessment.
Powell wrote last year in the Greenville Post and Courier that Octavio’s skills, contact and speed, are no longer valued by major league teams who place more importance on power and launch angles.
Powell sees Octavio as a link to “real” baseball.
Octavio’s senior numbers were impressive again, but his batting average dipped compared to his All-American junior season. Octavio finished third in the Conference of the Carolinas for batting average (.418) and runs (53) in 2021. He was also first in stolen bases (17) as well as triples (7).
He is currently hitting .359 and is second in the conference for runs (71) as well as steals (18). Although he is not a power hitter his on base percentage/slugging), is a solid 961.
Cheryl and Luke, his parents, made the long trip from Hilo to be with him. They were their last weekend to witness the Crusaders win their fourth consecutive conference tournament. This brought their record to 45-8.
At the conference tournament, his father informed him that his alma mater had won a second state title.
Murray State College, Oklahoma was where he started his college career. He is now an enthusiastic fan of the South and South Carolina in his third season.
Octavio plans to continue playing baseball beyond the current season. In August, Octavio will graduate with a general studies degree and a minor in criminal justice. Then, he will explore his options in independent leagues and internationally.