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Dodgers: Dave Roberts Surprised Andy Burns With Pitching Opportunity

What a wild time to be told you’re making your pitching debut.



Getting to see a position player pitch is usually sort of fun. Unfortunately for the Dodgers, they had to watch their own position player pitch on Saturday night. That’s something that almost only happens when your team is getting blown out. 

With the Dodgers down a ton in the 9th inning, Dave Roberts went to Andy Burns to finish it. Burns was already making his first big league appearance since 2016, but Los Angeles decided to make it even more interesting by giving him his pitching debut.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts explained his decision to go with Burns in the 9th. With Nate Jones’ pitch count climbing in a meaningless inning, it was an easy call to go with a position player out there.

It was just more, for me, trying to not put Nate in harm’s way. I was hoping that he could get through that one inning and throw a quick, efficient ninth inning. It just wasn’t to be. … At that point in time, the game was out of hand.

Funny enough, it was a surprise all around for the Dodgers. Dave Roberts admitted that he did not make the decision to bring in Burns until he got to the mound. The skipper said that he asked Burns if he was ready to make history and the infielder was all for it. 

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It’s got to be some sort of MLB record for a player getting his first big league hit and pitching his first big league inning in the same game. The Dodgers utilityman did give up a 2-run shot but he also collected his first MLB strikeout by blowing one past Josh Sborz. 

It was fun, but let’s not ever be in a place where we need a position player pitching ever again. 

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Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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