Former Pitman High pitcher Bradin Hagens was called up to the Arizona Diamondbacks major league team on Thursday.
Hagens was only with the Triple-A affiliate, the Reno Aces, for about six days and made only one appearance before receiving a call on Thursday morning that he had made it to the ‘Big Show.’
“It’s a blessing, it’s something that is awesome for my family as well the experience,” Hagens said. “I've been chasing this dream for six years and the fact that I can represent where I came from is nice too.”
After receiving the call, Hagens flew out to Miami where his new teammates are currently visiting the Marlins and he even made his first appearance in his first day with the clubhouse after taking the roster spot of left-handed pitcher Andrew Chafin.
Unfortunately for Hagens, he picked up the loss after pitching in the ninth inning allowing three hits, two walks and an earned run after the game was tied at 4-4 heading into the final inning.
“It was awesome. I made sure to take a look around and soak it in before I stepped on the mound, then it was time to get to work,” said Hagens about his first major league appearance. “It’s been nice and lots of people congratulating me ... obviously it’s still sinking in and I just feel really blessed that I get this opportunity.”
Hagens said that he wants to stay in the big leagues for a long time if the opportunity presents itself. After getting the first game jitters out of the way, he seems very calm and confident with what lies ahead.
“I need to execute and be consistent and work hard, which will be a big thing for me, and I’m hoping I can do that and things will get easier,” Hagens said.
The former Pride pitcher became the18th rookie Diamondback this year to start a game. The club says that will be a record, but Arizona has got some ways to go for the modern record in the National League, which belongs to the 2009 Padres, who used 27 rookies.
The Diamondbacks have been struggling all season long in the very competitive National League West as the team currently sits 17 games behind first place Dodgers of Los Angeles with a record of 52-69.
With a struggling year and a depleted bullpen and pitching staff it is obvious why the team decided to call upon the right-handed pitcher from Turlock.
“The team had a couple long days with doubleheaders and stuff like that and I think they needed help as far as I know for pitching,” said Hagens. “They called and told me, it’s surreal, hoped for it to happen and that it actually happened it’s pretty crazy still.”
The 25-year-old Hagens combined to go 8-7 with a 4.12 ERA (53 ER in 115.2 IP) in 25 games (19 starts) between Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Reno this season.
Hagens was drafted by the D-backs in the sixth round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft from Merced College.