|© MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.|
Scrappers' Naquin excels in debut06/21/2012 1:26 AM ET
By Robert Emrich / Special to MLB.com
Tyler Naquin had little nerves in his debut Wednesday and it showed in the results.
The Indians' top pick in the Draft was 3-for-4 with a double as Class A Short-Season Mahoning Valley slipped by Jamestown, 2-1, in 11 innings.
Batting second in the Scrappers lineup, Naquin hit an infield single in the first inning and stole second base two batters later. He doubled in the third, collected his second infield single in the fifth and fanned in his final at-bat in the seventh. Naquin was replaced by Aaron Siliga in the eighth.
"I just tried to go up to the plate and be calm and not try to do too much," Naquin told the Youngstown News. "When I'm myself and not thinking too much, I can help the team in a lot of ways."
Selected 15th overall out of Texas A&M, Naquin signed with Cleveland on June 15. Debuting in front of the home crowd helped ease him into pro baseball.
"It was a little more relaxed than I thought [it would be]," Naquin said. "It's a great atmosphere and I couldn't ask for better fans. They were all supportive."
Naquin was a college star, earning All-American honors and winning the Big 12 Conference Player of the Year. He led the country with 104 hits and scored 68 runs for the Aggies. That experience helped keep his emotions in check.
"Not really," Naquin said when asked whether he was nervous. "I've come this far in my career, and I just have to keep on believing in myself to go out there and play my game."
Juan Romero drew a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the 11th to win the game for the Scrappers. Joseph Wendle, a sixth-round pick, was 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored.