St. Louis Cardinals rookie Mike Mayers went into Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Dodgers with high hopes of putting on a show in his major league debut. He made history in his first start in the bigs, but not the good kind.
In 1 1/3 innings, Mayers allowed nine runs on eight hits, walking two and striking out one. It was statistically the worst debut ever for a pitcher, one he'd like to soon forget. Mayers became the first player to allow nine or more earned runs in fewer than two innings during a debut since earned runs became a stat in 1912, according to Elias Sports Bureau.
Mayers had this to say after his rough outing, via USA Today:
"It's the same game -- 60 feet, 6 inches," Mayers said. "I felt like I told myself that over and over, but as far as when you get out there it's a totally different ballgame. I felt like I kind of started to let my emotions get to me. The game kind of sped up after those first two hits. I felt like I had to be better and that's the situation I have to get a lot better with."
The biggest blow to Mayers' debut came on the fourth batter of the game. Adrian Gonzalez took him deep for a grand slam before an out was recorded, becoming just the third Dodger to ever accomplish that feat.
Mayers left the game with a 60.75 ERA. On Monday, he was optioned back to Triple-A Memphis. There's no doubt he has talent, it just didn't show in his first start.