Boog Powell made his Major League debut ... without playing in the field or stepping to the plate
Every baseball fan has likely dreamed of what their Major League debut would look like: A home run in the bottom of the ninth or a diving catch to save the game. Not many would dream of making their debuts like Boog Powell's. Called up after the Mariners put Evan Scribner on the DL, the second Boog Powell in Major League history was called on to pinch-hit for Mike Zunino in the seventh inning of Seattle's 4-3 loss to Cleveland on Saturday.
Unfortunately for the slugger (and probably any friends and relatives watching), after Powell was announced, Indians manager Terry Francona called on relief ace Andrew Miller in place of Danny Salazar. With a difficult lefty coming to the mound, Mariners skipper Scott Servais opted to call Powell back to the bench in place of Carlos Ruiz.
That meant Powell got an official appearance in the box score, but did not come to the plate or play in the field for a single strike.
Before Sunday's game, Servais told MLB.com's William Kosileski that Powell was OK with the move. "I think he saw who was coming into pitch," the skipper said. "That's a tough assignment for any left-handed hitter, certainly in your first AB."
According to Baseball Reference, it's the 24th time since 1913 that a player has been called on to pinch-hit and been removed from the game without getting to play in their big league debut. The Braves' Rio Ruiz was the most recent one to suffer at the hands of fate, but his was for another reason: Called on to pinch-hit in the bottom of the seventh on Sept. 18 last year, the game was called for rain before he ever came to the plate.
Not to worry: Rather than become the next Moonlight Graham, Ruiz picked up his first big league hit 10 days later. Even better: It was triple.
The list is filled with a number of Major Leaguers who had long and successful careers, like Ripper Collins (4,204 PA), Richie Hebner (7,027) and Bobby Abreu (10,081). With Scribner out for the next 10 days, Powell should get his chance to show off the keen batting eye that led the team's No. 24 prospect to post a .389 OBP in the Minors and occassionally do this: