While the Los Angeles Dodgers recalled Scott Schebler from Triple-A Oklahoma City on Friday to provide depth in the outfield, the Oakland Athletics, Dodgers’ general manager Farhan Zaidi’s previous employer, made headlines by calling up ambidextrous pitcher Pat Venditte from Triple-A Nashville.
Like Schebler, Venditte made his Major-League debut on his first night up. With the A’s facing the Boston Red Sox at iconic Fenway Park, the switch-pitcher’s debut carried added anticipation. He came on in the seventh inning with the A’s chasing two runs and as a left-handed pitcher.
After retiring Brock Holt, Venditte switched to throwing right-handed against former Dodger Hanley Ramirez, who knocked a single into left field. Venditte continued throwing as a righty and got Mike Napoli to ground into an inning-ending double play.
Venditte took the mound again in the eighth and retired the side in order. The road to the Majors was a long one for the 29 year old. He was selected by the New York Yankees in the 45th round of the 2007 draft and spent the next eight years in their Minor League system.
The A’s signed Venditte to a Minor League deal in the offseason. He was 1-0 with a 1.36 ERA and held opponents to a .167 batting average over 17 outings (16 in relief) in Triple-A this season. Venditte became the first pitcher to throw with both hands in a Major-League game since Greg Harris did it with the Montreal Expos on Sept. 28, 1995.