6/27 Beeler to make ML debut

Dallas Beeler didn’t believe it when he was told that he would be promoted from Triple-A Iowa to the big leagues.

“I sat down and had to ask three times if he was kidding with me or not,” Beeler said. “I’m still on cloud nine right now, floating around.”

The right-hander, who was a 41st round pick, will make his Major League debut on Saturday at Wrigley Field in the first game of the Cubs’ doubleheader against the Nationals. He was picked over Kyle Hendricks, Chris Rusin and Eric Jokisch because of how he was doing at Iowa and also because the timing worked.

What’s he been doing well in the Minors this year?

“[Iowa pitching coach] Bruce Walton, he’s been hammering in our heads to throw strikes and that’s what worked,” Beeler said.

Did the right-hander get any advice from teammates about Saturday?

“They just said, ‘Go out and enjoy it and have fun,'” Beeler said. “They said, ‘Breathe.’ That was the big one from everybody. Take it in, take a deep breath, and get back to work.”

His parents will make the trip. They were in Des Moines for Beeler’s last start, and then flew to Seattle to see a soccer tournament. His Iowa teammates teased him and some were very supportive. It’s all in good fun.

Said Theo Epstein: “I always like calling up a young pitcher for the first time and tell him, ‘It’s one start, we need you for a doubleheader. Come out and do your thing. If you throw a no-hitter, you’re going back, and if you don’t get out of the first inning, you’re going back. Come out, relax and have fun.”

Beeler has had a front row seat to watch Javier Baez and Kris Bryant as well.

“You feel like you’re watching future Hall of Famers when you see them play,” Beeler said.

— Carrie Muskat


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