ROCKIES

Top Rockies draft pick finally makes MLB debut two years after retiring

May 17, 2023, 4:10 PM

Riley Pint’s Major League Baseball debut on Wednesday was much like the rest of his professional career and the way the big right-hander throws: erratic.

Coming in to finish out the ninth of an 11-6 Colorado Rockies win over the Cincinnati Reds, Pint lasted only one-third of an inning. In his 20-pitch big league debut, he only managed to throw six strikes. He walked three and allowed a hit. Pint was only taxed for one run, which funny enough was scored by Nick Senzel.

Senzel was taken with the No. 2 overall pick of the 2016 MLB draft, Pint went two picks later to Colorado Rockies at No. 4. In the seven years since, Pint has been named a top prospect, retired from baseball, and has been changed from starter to reliever.

He struggled across seven minor league seasons, giving up baseball in 2021, coming back in 2022 as a reliever, and then finally reaching the high minors.

Pint was once clocked at 102 mph with his heater in high school, leading to the high pick and the $4.8 million signing bonus. He was the last of the top dozen in his draft class to debut. Though his draft class hasn’t been good across the board, the best player being Pete Alonso who went in the second round. Only one player taken in the top 30 has accumulated 5 or more WAR and that’s Gavin Lux.

Pierce Johnson came in and got a rare two-out, five-run difference save for his eighth of the season. The win pushed the Rockies to 19-26, winning their 10th game of May.

Pint will get sent right back down as Colorado is expected to make a roster move in the coming hours. Second-round pick from 2019 Karl Kauffmann, should be making his MLB debut as a starter on Friday, as the Rockies pitching staff continues to get hit with the injury bug.

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