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Desmond Jennings triples, doubles in 2011 MLB debut

Jul 24, 2011, 10:41 AM EDT

getty jennings sun Getty Images

Rays outfielder Desmond Jennings technically made his major league debut during the 2010 season, but Saturday evening felt like his true arrival.

The 24-year-old was promoted from Triple-A Durham late Friday night and got to work immediately in Saturday’s game against the Royals.

Jennings led off the contest with a first-inning triple to deep left-center field, smacked an RBI double in the second inning, drew an intentional walk in the fourth inning, and then scored after drawing another walk in the sixth inning. All in all, the promising young speedster stole one base, scored two runs, drove in one run, and provided a welcome spark at the top of the Tampa Bay lineup.

Kansas City eventually won in extra innings courtesy of an Eric Homser walkoff RBI double.

Jennings is expected to see regular playing time down the stretch and should be a mainstay on highlight reel shows for years to come. He had an .825 career OPS in the minors and 188 steals in 222 attempts.

  1. Chris Fiorentino - Jul 24, 2011 at 11:03 AM

    I’ll just caution that Domonic Brown had superior minor league numbers and a similar debut last year. And we all see where he is right now. You just never know with these guys.

    • hittfamily - Jul 24, 2011 at 11:15 AM

      Yeah, but Domonick Brown was brought along quickly. Jennings has been groomed for future success, not shot through the system. They learned their lesson with BJ.

  2. hittfamily - Jul 24, 2011 at 11:09 AM

    This kid is a stud. .800 onbase percentage. Right out of the box. The much needed leadoff hitter has arrived, all be it 3 months later than he should have. I will trust Friedman and Co. knowmore than me, but it’s still hard to understand. Our pitching staff is locked up for half a decade. 5 games over .500 and we will be sellers. The AL East is tough!!!!

  3. proudlycanadian - Jul 24, 2011 at 12:30 PM

    A star is born. He will bring excitement to the AL East.

  4. wlschneider09 - Jul 24, 2011 at 12:40 PM

    Drool drool hype hype. He’s just another prospect, chances are just as good that he bombs like Delmon or Upton or Rasmus. One good game and everyone swoons.

    The Rays took their time with BJ too. And Delmon before that. I remember Rays fans screaming for them to be called up, and it just didn’t matter. Good minor league numbers, no great minor league numbers for both of them. Both are fine major leaguers, but neither was or will be a star. Just because they’re young doesn’t mean they are great.

    • Ick McWang - Jul 24, 2011 at 2:26 PM

      The Rays did NOT take their time with Upton. They rushed him up even though he was playing shortstop/second base/third base at the time and he made like 30+ errors in 50 games. They told him he either moves to center field, or gets sent down to the minors, and he chose to move positions to stay in the bigs.

      “He made his major league debut on August 2, 2004, becoming the youngest Ray ever and the youngest player in the major leagues in 2004”

      They rushed him like crazy because in 2004 Upton was about the only reason to even watch a (Devil) Rays game.

      They also rushed Delmon Young, he was extremely immature but they bpromoted him anyway a month before he turned 21.

      I don’t understand what you were trying to say at all in your post, the team rushed every prospect prior to the Stu Sternberg complete takeover prior to 2008.

    • hittfamily - Jul 24, 2011 at 4:05 PM

      Make it 2 good games, and we’re still swooning. Today he’s 2/3 with a double,run, stolen base, hbp. His obp is below .800 now, but the games not over. This guy is electric. A base magnet.

  5. wlschneider09 - Jul 24, 2011 at 8:55 PM

    You know, you’re right. I shouldn’t be taking this out on Desmond Jennings. My little rant was directed towards our fascination with prospects, the undying belief that each and every one is “electric” “5-tool”,”beast” “amazing” etc… Most of them just aren’t.

    I don’t think the Rays rushed either Delmon or BJ. Both hit very well that first year. BJ hit better that first full year (2007) than he’s ever hit again, he was as ready as he would ever be. Delmon’s performance at 21 was exactly what it is now. I think the whole “rushed to the majors” is a rationalization we use when our prospects don’t live up to the massive hype that fantasy websites and baseball bloggers build up for them.

    I find it hard to believe that Jennings is all that. He’s a .280 hitter at AAA (600+ abs), I find it hard to believe he’s gonna pull it all together at the major league level. I’d expect something around the .250/.330/.350 level to start with, not the savior of the franchise this year.

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