D-backs RHP Brandon Pfaadt chased by Rangers in MLB debut

May 3, 2023, 12:59 PM | Updated: 2:24 pm

Brandon Pfaadt during his Diamondbacks MLB debut...

Brandon Pfaadt #32 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitches against the Texas Rangers while making his Major League debut in the bottom of the second inning at Globe Life Field on May 03, 2023 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Brandon Pfaadt cruised through the first four innings against the Texans Rangers before a fifth-frame slip-up snowballed during his MLB debut Wednesday.

Pfaadt recovered from two solo homers in the second and fourth frames in Arlington, but a third mistake in that fifth inning turned into four more to chase the rookie, who was promoted to the D-backs rotation this week.

The righty was pulled in the 12-7 Arizona win after allowing nine hits, four homers and seven earned runs as Arizona trailed 7-6 through 4.2 innings.

“He’s earned every inch of this opportunity. He’s gone in through the minor leagues and thrown a lot of strikes,” senior vice president and assistant general manager Amiel Sawdaye told Arizona Sports’ Wolf & Luke before the game. “That’s what he does. He attacks with his fastball.

“He got three-plus pitches but he’s not afraid to try to bully you with his fastball — and he’s got a really good one.”

It worked — for a little bit.

Pfaadt got through a 12-pitch first inning before facing his first bit of adversity.

Attacking low in the zone against Jonah Heim in the second inning, Pffadt hung a 90 mph changeup for a solo home run to right field that gave Texas a 1-0 lead.

An 85-mph slider in the bottom of the fourth inning gave Josh Jung another solo shot for the Rangers, but Arizona helped Pfaadt’s first two mistakes roll off his shoulders.

D-backs first baseman Christian Walker slugged a three-run homer in the third to put Arizona ahead 3-1, and Ketel Marte’s two-run bomb in the fifth grew the lead to 5-2. Walker followed shortly after in the same frame with a two-out homer.

Rangers starter Andrew Heaney got pulled after Walker’s second big hit, with his team down 6-2.

But Pfaadt was quick to follow his counterpart off the field.

In the bottom of the fifth, Texas’ Leody Taveras cranked up on a middle-of-the-zone changeup for a home run, Travis Jankowski lined a four-seamer for an RBI-double and Jung caught another Pfaadt fastball to put Texas ahead again, 7-6. All of the misses were well in the strike zone.

Arizona reacted to an inning of Rangers scoring once again.

The D-backs recorded four hits, three walks and added a fielder’s choice reach for a five-run seventh.

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