Kris Bryant calls MLB debut ‘a dream come true,’ but strikes out in first at-bat
Chicago Cubs super-prospect Kris Bryant made his long-awaited and much-anticipated Major League Baseball debut on Friday at Wrigley Field, but not before going through a whirlwind of emotions, not to mention a morning of stressful traveling.
Bryant, who admitted he cried on Thursday night, reportedly arrived at Wrigley Field on Friday morning at 10:30 a.m. to a supercharged environment, where he was greeted by a media throng of 48 reporters and seven TV crews. He was on three hours of sleep and after boarding a flight from New Orleans and even got caught up in the legendary Chicago rush hour traffic on his way to the ballpark.
Still, nothing could dampen his spirits as his dream became reality.
“I can’t really put into words how good of a feeling this is,” Bryant said, via USA Today’s Bob Nightengale. “You work for this your whole life, and finally get that chance, but I think the journey is just starting.”
Bryant’s ultimate arrival in the big leagues of course arguably was somewhat marred by what many perceived to be a bit of gamesmanship on behalf of the Cubs. Despite tearing it up spring training, a disappointed Bryant was sent to the minors, presumably to extend out his free agency by one year. The Cubs not surprisingly denied that was the case.
Nevertheless, despite all the hand-wringing, finger-pointing and the floating of conspiracy theories, Bryant would at long last be in a lineup at the major league level in a regular season game.
When asked if he was feeling any pressure due to the hype surrounding his call-up, Bryant downplayed any notion he was suffering with a bout of nerves.
“There is no pressure in the game,” Bryant said. “You play the game for fun.
“I don’t play this game for money or the fame, I play because this has been a dream of mine.
“This is a dream come true.”
Bryant’s MLB debut, though, couldn’t have gotten off to a more inauspicious start. After receiving a nice standing ovation from the Cubs faithful, Bryant struck out swinging on three pitches from the Padres’ James Shields. He then struck out swinging in his next at-bat as well. While obviously not the start he wanted, odds are Bryant, despite saying he felt no pressure, probably is a bit overwhelmed by the day.
(photo credit: SportsCenter/Twitter)