CHICAGO – When the Cubs made their deal with the Yankees to acquire him on August 1st, there was some hope that the pitcher might be able to make it to the major league level before the end of the season.
That would be a rarity for north siders at the moment since most of their deals involve players who are just starting out their minor league careers. That’s not the case for Hayden Wesneski, who was in Triple-A for New York when he arrived in Chicago in exchange for reliever Scott Effross.
That moment arrived on Tuesday as the pitcher got the call-up from Iowa after a few strong starts for the Triple-A affiliate. When he got his shot at Wrigley Field later that night, Wesneski took full advantage.
Coming out of the bullpen to start the fifth inning, the reliever wasted no time showing what he could do for the Cubs against the Reds. He’d finish out the game to get the victory without allowing a run and just two hits, striking out eight batters while allowing only one walk.
That was the highlight of a 9-3 Cubs’ victory in which a pitcher that could be part of their future made some major league history.
Per the Cubs, Wesneski became the first hurler in Major League Baseball history to make his big league debut out of the bullpen, pitch at least five innings, allow two or fewer hits, and strikeout at least eight batters. He became the first Cubs player and fourth in the league to debut out of the bullpen and have at least eight strikeouts.
How much Wesneski continues to pitch out of the bullpen will be determined as will the chance of him getting a start, which has been his primary role during his time in the minor leagues. But it’s safe to say that few will forget his debut at Wrigley Field on Tuesday.