Class of 2018
Pitcher, Designated Hitter
Tilden Tigers 1998-2011
A hard throwing right-hander and tough right-handed hitter, Nick Blair was a respected and winning player throughout his 14 seasons of play in the CRBL, all with the tradition rich Tigers of Tilden.
The righty’s 1998 arrival gave Tilden a power arm that fortified the Tigers’ established strengths of excellent pitching and rock solid defense. Blaire shined in his first full-time campaign in 1999, going 6 and 1 from the hill with 52 strikeouts in 64.2 innings and an ERA of 2.92 while leading the CRBL in saves with 2 and shutouts with 2. Accordingly, Nick was voted All-CRBL as a pitcher.
Blair came backin 2000 with perhaps his best all-around season. In shouldering a career high 70.2 innings, Nick led the CRBL with 7 wins (against 2 losses), while punching out 45 and holding a 3.31 ERA. The stalwart performance coincided with his first full-time season as a hitter, one in which he hit .370 (17 for 46) for Tilden. Rightfully, Nick was voted All-CRBL at pitcher for the second year in a row.
Blair’s .370 average in 2000 was the first of five consecutive seasons (2000-2004), in which he went above .300. He also surpassed .300 in 2007 when he hit .341 (15 for 44). A consistent run producer, Nick drove in more than 10 runs five times (2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007) with a high of 16 RBI’s twice (2003 and 2006).
Despite his productivity at the plate, it is indeed as a pitcher where Blaire will be most remembered. Never one to shy away from taking the ball, the right-hander hurler averaged 55 innings per season from 1999 to 2005, notching his tow other league leading totals in that stretch when in 2004, he paced the CRBL in wins (7) and winning percentage (.875, 7 wins and 1 loss).
Nick’s willingness to take the ball was evident in that he pitched in one CRBL championship series (1999, appearing in both games) and six CRBL championship contests (2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006) for the Tigers. Capturing MVP honors in the 2002 title match, he was the winning pitcher (8.1 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 4 H, 5 BB, 4 K) in Tilden’s 4-2 victory over the Bears at Carson Park.
Blair and the Tigers enjoyed a plethora of success during their 14 seasons together, including three CRBL championships (2002, 2007, 2011), ten North Division crowns, 14 WBA appearances, two WBA championship games (2000 and 2004) and one WBA crown (2004).
In addtion to 1999 and 2000, Nick also was bestowed All-CRBL awards in 2001 (pitcher), 2003 (pitcher), 2004 (pitcher), 2006 (designated hitter, retroactively given in 2017) and 2007 (designated hitter, retroactively given in 2017). In total, Blair garnered seven All-CRBL awards in his 14 seasons, a telling sign of how the Big Tiger was viewed by his CRBL contemporaries.
In conjuction with those seven All-CRBL awards, Blair was given honorable mention All-CRBL awards in 2001 (utility) and 2005 (pitcher). For good measure, he participated in four all-star games (2000, 2001, 2002, 2004).
Upon induction, Nick Blair’s highest all-time rankings are from the mound where he is tied for 19th in winning percentage, tied for 20th in wins, tied for 24th in saves, tied for 33rd in decisions, and soley at 33rd for innings pitched.