Julio Urias was projected to be the next best LHP in the MLB, surpassing Clayton Kershaw by the end of the 2016 season. In his last eight starts in the minors, Urias threw 8 straight complete games, recording 8 wins.
Urias made his MLB debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers on May 27 as the Dodgers took on the New York Mets. Pitching against veterans and the No. 2 projected hitter of the year; Urias had a lot of work to do.
Urias took the mound at the bottom of the first after the Dodgers recorded a quick 3-out in the top of the first. Urias struck out the fist batter he met. Striking out 35-year-old Curtis Granderson, Urias seemed as though he was going to meet the hype that was set up for him before the game. However, Urias quickly tanked, allowing three ER in the bottom of the first.
The Dodgers still held faith in Urias as he again took the mound in the second inning. Urias did much better, in terms of hits, in the second, however he would walk yet another batter. Urias would get out of the second without another run, only striking out the opposing pitcher, Jacob deGrom.
Urias seemed to be getting in his groove as he quickly got 2 outs to start the bottom of the third. Juan Lageres stepped up to the plate, ready to face the prodigy they are calling Urias. Lageres hit a line drive to left field, earning him a single. Urias would proceed to walk both Kevin Plawecki and Eric Campbell to load the bases with two-outs.
Urias’ next batter to face would once again be the opposing pitcher deGrom, however Manager Dave Roberts considered it to be too much of a risk and replaced Urias with veteran pitcher Chris Hatcher after only 2.2 innings pitched.
Now we have to think, is Urias the pitcher we thought he would be? Was he only a great minor-league pitcher? Was he just nervous because it was his MLB debut?
It is important to remember that Urias is only 19-years-old and that it very well could have been nerves. However, it was quite hefty to say that Urias could outshine the Pitching God that is Kershaw by the end of this season.
Urias may have been an incredible minor league pitcher, however that was the minors. He has a lot to prove before he can become an elite major league pitcher and he sure got a taste of that action on Friday.
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