Coming into tonight’s game against the Houston Astros the Pittsburgh Pirates had received minimal production from the leadoff spot in their lineup. For the season the top spot had produced just a .217 batting average and .264 on-base percentage. Left field has also been a problem offensively for the current NL wild card leaders. They’ve only managed to get 25 RBI and a .196 average from their left fielders through the first 97 games.
As far as the Pirates were concerned this was as good a time as any to call up 23-year old prospect Starling Marte to see if he could jump start the offense. In 99 games this season at Triple-A Marte hit .286 with 64 runs, 12 home runs, 62 RBI, and 21 stolen bases. He came into 2012 as the #73 rated prospect by Baseball America.
Manager Clint Hurdle penciled Marte into the leadoff spot and played him in left field tonight for his Major League debut. It didn’t take long for Marte to make his presence felt.
Marte added a single in the fifth inning to notch a multi-hit game in his first big league appearance.
How sweet it is! Starling Marte and the ball he hit for his first Major League home run twitter.com/Pirates/status…
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) July 27, 2012