2 hits in MLB debut

Lonnie Chisenhall was called up before Monday’s game in Arizona to make his major league debut and responded with a 2-4 performance. He’s the 7th Indian to collect two hits in his debut since 1990 and the first with two hits and an RBI since Josh Bard in 2002.

And not to put too much pressure on the kid, but the last Tribe third baseman with two hits in his debut: future Hall of Fame Jim Thome

Player Date Tm Opp Rslt AB R H 2B HR RBI Pos.
Lonnie Chisenhall 2011-06-27 CLE ARI W 5-4 4 0 2 1 0 1 3B
Jason Donald 2010-05-18 CLE TBR L 2-6 3 1 2 0 0 0 SS
Michael Brantley 2009-09-01 CLE DET L 5-8 4 1 2 0 0 0 LF
Josh Bard 2002-08-23 CLE SEA W 4-2 4 1 2 0 1 3 C
Dave Roberts 1999-08-07 CLE TBD W 15-10 5 3 3 1 0 0 CF
Jim Thome 1991-09-04 CLE MIN W 8-4 4 1 2 0 0 1 3B
Mark Lewis 1991-04-26 CLE TEX W 5-2 3 0 2 1 0 2 SS
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 6/28/2011.
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Game-winning RBI in MLB debut

Ezequiel Carrera‘s bunt was not only one of the most exciting game-winning hits I’ve ever seen, but also one of the rarest of rare feats in baseball history: a game-winning bunt on the first pitch of his career to give his team a last at-bat victory. It’s so obscure, I don’t even know how to begin to search for other instances of such a play.

So I’ll start with this: last at-bat game-winning RBI in a major league debut, of which there were only two others in the past 90 seasons.

The most recent such hit was Josh Bard‘s walk-off home run off Seattle’s James Baldwin in his debut on Aug. 23, 2002. He joined Billy Parker as the only players in baseball history with a walk-off homer in his major league debut.

Prior to Bard, you have to go all the way back to May 9, 1943 when Eddie Turchin made his major league debut for the Tribe. While play-by-play is unavailable for the game, the box score and newspaper articles indicate that Turchin entered the game late after a series of changes at shortshop (Boudreau started, but lifted himself for a pinch-hitter in the 7th). Turchin then went 2-2 in his debut, and drove in the game-winning RBI in the top of the 13th at Sportsman’s Park to give the Tribe a 6-5 victory over the Browns. It would be the only RBI of Turchin’s very brief 11-game career. Here’s a link to a newspaper article from The Portsmouth Times the following day.

Carlos Santana is no Wyatt Toregas

It’s incredibly early in the career of Carlos Santana. Far too early to jump to any conclusions about his future.

But it’s never too early to see how he stacks up against former Tribesmen.

Santana is five games into his career and already has four RBI (thanks to his three-RBI game on Saturday against the Nationals). His numbers aren’t overwhelming, but that is a fairly impressive run-producing start for a rookie.

Over the last 50 seasons, only one Indians catcher has driven in more runs through his first five career games. And surprisingly, we don’t have to go back very far to find the only one better. You may remember Wyatt Toregas.

Toregas was called up last August and drove in five runs in his first five games. Unfortunately, he drove in just one more in his final 14 games of the season.

Based on the fact that he’s hitting .203 in 17 games as Akron this year, we may have already seen the last of Toregas.