Relative to the average minor league player—even those talented enough to be first-round picks—Henry Davis’s journey from MLB draftee to the major leagues was a quick one. So it’s only fitting that, in his first career big-league game, it didn’t take him long to deliver an exciting moment in front of his new home fans.
Davis, who was the No. 1 pick in the 2021 MLB draft, ripped a double in his first career plate appearance on Monday night off of Cubs starter Drew Smyly, quickly living up to the hype that’s followed him since he was drafted nearly two years ago. Upon reaching second base, he clapped to himself, and then mimed the Pirates’ sword celebration to his teammates in the dugout.
FIRST MAJOR LEAGUE HIT FOR HENRY DAVIS! pic.twitter.com/h9D5JUXJqL
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) June 20, 2023
Davis made his debut playing right field, though has spent most of his professional career as a catcher and projects to settle in behind the dish in the long term. In 51 minor-league games this season across Double and Triple A, the 23-year-old hit .284/.433/.541 with 11 home runs and nine stolen bases.
Davis struck out in his second at-bat but walked in his third. He hit .337 as a college star at Louisville, with more walks (52) than strikeouts (46), so his ability to hit has always been on full display. And if Monday is any indication, he has plenty of composure to come through when the stadium atmosphere is at its peak.