PITTSBURGH, PA (AP) - After 13 years of playing in the minors, Drew maggi received a standing ovation on Wednesday when he debuted for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
In the eighth inning, with the Pirates leading by seven runs, the 33-year old, who had played 1,154 minor league games, was able to pinch hit for McCutchen, a five-time All Star. Maggi was hit by four pitches, including a slider from Alex Vesia. The rookie batter also violated the pitch-clock during this at-bat.
After the Pirates' 8-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers, Maggi smiled and said: 'It was the best strikeout that I've ever had.'
Maggio, who had played 4,494 games in the minors before being called up to the majors on Sunday after outfielder Bryan Reynolds went on bereavement leave, was promoted from Altoona's Double-A. Maggi's first two games were not used by Derek Shelton in Pittsburgh. Maggi was afraid of repeating the 2019 situation, when he had been called up to Minnesota for a short time but did not play in any game.
Shelton was the Twins bench coach at that time and was delighted to be able get Maggi on board.
"That was really cool," Shelton said. Shelton replied, 'That was really cool. Shelton said, 'It was really cool to be the one to tell him to pinch-hit, since I've been his friend.
This is the moment. Maggio remembered thinking, "This is it."
The crowd of 12,152 booed the plate umpire Jeff Nelson as he fouled a pitch deep along the left field line.
After fouling a second fastball on the right, Maggi took another high-and-outside pitch before swinging at a pitch. He ran to the first baseman, where Freddie Freeman's throw from Austin Wynn was easily beaten by him.
Maggi claimed he had no regrets about spending over a decade playing in the minors. He admitted that Wednesday's game made his years in the minors worthwhile.
I worked hard for 13 years, but I did what I loved. The big leagues are the ultimate goal. My name is now in history, just by getting to this point. I put on the big league uniform and shared the field with some of the greatest players in the world.
Maggi visited with her family on the railing of the box seats after the game. When he saw that his parents had traveled from Phoenix and met other family members, the magnitude of the occasion hit him.
There were many I love You. You're a great person. I'm not sure I've ever seen him cry. I've wondered for years what I would tell my parents when that day came. They were right there with me. It was worth it to hear those words. 'I know that the 13 years I spent in school were not wasted.