It’s never too late for your first time.
In this case, we are talking about Cleveland Guardians reliever Bryan Shaw, who will be taking the hill to start against the Boston Red Sox at 7:10 p.m. ET.
It will be his first career start as a major leaguer.
Bryan Shaw will make his first career start tonight.#ForTheLand pic.twitter.com/jXorQ2o4Wp
— Cleveland Guardians (@CleGuardians) July 26, 2022
He will be acting as an opener, though: don’t expect him out there for more than one, perhaps two frames.
The last time the 34-year-old Shaw made a start in a professional game was in 2010, when he was at the Arizona Diamondbacks’ Double-A affiliate.
Lots of MLB relievers have a history of starting games in the minors, and even in the majors at one point.
However, they often fail to develop a third pitch or have less-than-ideal command, so they are shipped to the pen.
Shaw, who has a 3.86 ERA during his MLB career, has been a fine reliever.
Francona Is Trusting Shaw Despite His High Season ERA
However, he hasn’t been good in the 2022 season.
Before taking the mound on Tuesday night at Fenway Park, the right-hander had a 5.29 ERA in 34 innings.
It’s his highest ERA finish (considering normal sample sizes) since his poor showing with the Colorado Rockies in 2019, when he posted a 5.38 ERA.
Tonight, however, he will be tasked with shutting down the Red Sox’s top of the lineup for at least an inning.
It isn’t easy, as Boston has some elite batters up there, especially at home.
Manager Terry Francona is trusting the reliever with a tough task, showing he has some faith in him despite what the recent numbers say.
The 48-47 Guardians certainly need the win to keep up with the Minnesota Twins, who are up 3.5 games in the AL Central.
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