8/21 Rusin’s line: 5 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 4 Ks
The last time Dale Sveum saw Chris Rusin pitch was April 1 in Tempe, Ariz., in a Cactus League game. It left a good impression as the lefty held the Angels to two hits over 5 1/3 innings.
“Hopefully, he can keep the ball down like he did that day and show us what he can do at the big league level,” Sveum said before Rusin made his Major League debut Tuesday night against the Brewers.
Rusin gave up one hit, an infield single, and one run over five innings, striking out four. He tried to help himself when he tripled in his first big league at-bat, lining the ball to right center with one out in the third, but he was stranded. No Cubs pitcher has ever tripled on their first Major League at-bat. Pitcher Bob Muncrief did triple in his Cubs debut on June 8, 1948, but that hit came in his second at-bat, and it wasn’t his first ML at-bat. According to STATS Inc., the last Cubs player to triple in their first career at-bat was Dan Rohn, and he did so Sept. 2, 1983, in his second plate appearance after walking in his first.
Rusin also fielded his position well, handling a comebacker by Marco Estrada and throwing the pitcher out to end the third. But his foot got in the way in the fourth. The Brewers loaded the bases with one out as Rusin hit two batters and walked another. The first hit off Rusin was literally off the pitcher as Corey Hart lined an infield single off his left foot. A run scored.
The lefty was pulled after throwing 76 pitches, 40 for strikes.
– Carrie Muskat