Vosler 'in the moment' in big league debut

April 26th, 2021

SAN FRANCISCO -- waited a long time to receive his first big league callup. When it came time to finally take his first career Major League at-bat with the Giants on Saturday night, he found himself waiting a little bit longer.

After manager Gabe Kapler sent Vosler out to pinch-hit for right-hander Kevin Gausman with the game tied at 1 in the bottom of the eighth inning, Marlins pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre trotted out to the mound to deliver a quick scouting report to reliever Dylan Floro.

As he stood on the on-deck circle, Vosler took a second to look around Oracle Park and appreciate his official arrival to the big leagues.

“I definitely had a lot of nervous energy all game,” Vosler said on Sunday morning. “I took a lot of swings in the cage before just to kind of get out the energy and not be sitting around. I was ready to go. When I walked out there, I kind of think I sped everything up a bit at first, and then their pitching coach went out and talked to their pitcher. That kind of helped me a lot. It really relaxed me and gave me some time.”

Vosler ended up popping out in foul territory to end the inning, but he didn’t have to wait long for another opportunity to contribute to the Giants. The 27-year-old infielder entered Sunday’s 4-3 win over the Marlins in the third inning to replace Wilmer Flores, who was forced to depart with an illness, and went on to collect his first Major League hit and steal in the fifth.

“That’s a moment you dream about since you were a kid,” Vosler said afterward. “When I got to first base, Antoan [Richardson] was like, ‘Take it in, look around. This is a special moment.’ I’m happy he said that because when he did say that, I kind of focused up and really appreciated the moment and appreciated where I was.”

Vosler was added to the Giants’ 26-man roster shortly before first pitch on Saturday to give the club more depth following the injuries to second baseman Donovan Solano (right calf strain), third baseman Evan Longoria (left hamstring tightness) and shortstop Brandon Crawford (right quad tightness). Solano is expected to be out for a while after landing on the injured list last week, and Longoria and Crawford are day to day.

A former Cubs and Padres prospect, Vosler joined the Giants on a Major League deal in November and batted .291 with an .890 OPS and 20 home runs for Triple-A El Paso in 2019. The left-handed hitter is primarily a corner infielder, but he has experience playing second base and left field as well.

Vosler had been working out at the Giants’ alternate training site, but he was brought to San Francisco on Saturday and learned he’d be called up after receiving a call from Kapler about three hours before game time.

Vosler immediately called his parents, Bob and Susan, and his girlfriend, Courtney Pfeiffer, to share the news and then quickly headed to Oracle Park, where he managed to squeeze in batting practice and take some ground balls at third base before the game.

Vosler’s family hails from the Northeast, so they weren’t able to fly to San Francisco in time for his debut, but they were in the stands to witness his big milestones on Sunday. Vosler said he plans to give his first-hit ball to his parents for safekeeping.

“I will probably give it to my parents to take home with them,” Vosler said. “I trust them with it. I don’t trust myself with it throughout the season. They’ll take it home and they’ll keep it somewhere safe at their house, and then when the offseason comes I’ll decide what to do with it.”

Cueto update

The Giants were hoping Johnny Cueto (lat strain) would only miss two starts, but Kapler said Sunday that the 35-year-old veteran won’t be ready to rejoin the rotation the next time through.

“I don’t anticipate it,” Kapler said. “I don’t want to rule anything out, but I don’t anticipate him being ready to pitch in a Major League game the next time through our rotation.”