Adbert Alzolay's Cap-Tipping Debut Gave Both Him and Us So Many Reasons to Smile

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Adbert Alzolay’s Cap-Tipping Debut Gave Both Him and Us So Many Reasons to Smile

Chicago Cubs

I think even the home run and the walk in the 9th were perfect.

Obviously it wouldn’t be a bad thing if Adbert Alzolay pitched five no-hit, strikeout-laden innings in his big league debut. But there’s almost something about the arc of his night that feels even better to me. The 24-year-old top Cubs pitching prospect looked a little amped in his first inning of work, losing his command to the arm side, but he got through the inning. Then he dominated, almost comically so, for three innings. Then, as something of a cosmic reminder about what it’s like to be in the big leagues, Todd Frazier crushed a mistake pitch, Alzolay lost the plate on four straight after that, and he was pulled from the game.

Welcome to the big leagues, kid. Tremendous outing, but there’s always more to work on.

I like it. I like it a lot.

I also like that Alzolay showed the world exactly what a lot of us saw in his handful of AAA starts we caught on video: he simply looks like a big league starting pitcher. There’s something about the life of his fastball, the bite of his curveball, and the way he attacks hitters aggressively in the zone that make you feel confident that he belongs. Even on a night when he absolutely did not have his best command, he still had enough stuff to wipe out several very good Mets hitters.

A bonus? The changeup – a clear third pitch behind his four-seamer and his curveball – looked really good. It’s no surprise he said after the game that was the best he’s thrown the pitch.

The highlights:

Ultimately, Alzolay went 4.0 innings, allowing just the one hit (HR), two walks, and striking out five.

Alzolay rightly had so much happy energy after the debut:

More goodness from the stellar Alzolay outing:

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)


Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.