Anchors Aweigh: Cards’ Harris becomes first Navy grad to play in MLB in 94 years
It should come as no surprise that Mitch Harris looked impervious to pressure in his long-awaited major league debut.
A scary injury to Adam Wainwright led to an unexpected early relief appearance for the former Navy lieutenant, who served as a weapons officer in South America, Russia and the Persian Gulf.
Nearly seven years after St. Louis drafted Harris in the 13th round, he fired his first fastball over the plate at 95 mph and struck out Milwaukee first baseman Adam Lind on four pitches.
The right-hander got some scattered applause from the Cardinals fans who made the trip and a hearty congratulations from his teammates in the dugout.
But he wasn’t done yet.
Harris came back out in the sixth and finished with 1 1/3 scoreless innings before leaving with a 2-0 lead and the inside track to his first major league win — or so it seemed.
After the Cardinals held on for a 5-3 victory over the Brewers, the official scorer decided against awarding the win to the first Navy grad to play in the majors since 1921, giving it instead to Matt Belisle, who struck out a pair of batters to end the sixth.
Though he was denied the storybook ending to this chapter of his career, the 29-year-old still has plenty of time to accomplish more.