Major League Baseball’s opening day was Thursday, and many former Mississippi State standouts broke spring training on a major league roster, ready to make an impact.
With the first weekend of Major League Baseball in the books, here’s a collective look at the performance of former Diamond Dawgs making an impact at the next level.
Nate Lowe certainly made a great first impression with his new organization, launching a 465-foot mammoth 3-run home run in the Texas Rangers’ victory Sunday against the Kansas City Royals. Lowe had a strong series, going 5-for-14 and driving in nine runs.
Starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff went four innings in his opening day start with the Milwaukee Brewers, allowing three earned runs on six hits and two walks while striking out five batters. The fireballing right hander is scheduled to make his next start on Wednesday against the Chicago Cubs.
Pirates second baseman Adam Frazier collected three hits in his team’s opening series against the Chicago Cubs. His best performance was in the Pirates’ season-opening win Thursday where he collected two hits, walked twice, stole a base and drove in two runs. His teammate, relief pitcher Chris Stratton, made two appearances over the weekend with mixed results. He allowed a run in an inning of work on Thursday, but bounced back with a scoreless frame Sunday, in which he recorded a strikeout. Pittsburgh has another MSU connection to monitor, as starting pitcher David Bednar, the brother of current MSU hurler Will Bednar, is scheduled to make his first start of the season Monday against the Reds.
Pitcher Kendall Graveman had an electric start to his season Saturday for the Seattle Mariners, striking out five of seven batters faced in two scoreless innings against the San Francisco Giants.
Brent Rooker was called up by the Minnesota Twins on the second day of the season after Josh Donaldson landed on the 10-day injured list. Rooker made an appearance in Sunday’s matchup against the Brewers after replacing Byron Buxton, who left the game with an illness. Rooker went 0-for-2 in his season debut but may see more playing time in the coming days.
Also of note, Mitch Moreland picked up a hit Saturday for the Oakland Athletics in a contest against the Houston Astros.