Right-handed pitcher Clayton Blackburn has been so very close. The Rangers rookie is still looking for his major league debut.
The 24-year-old who was born in Amarillo but grew up in Edmond, Okla., said before Tuesday’s game he was anxious to get through the moment. The Rangers acquired him in a trade with the Giants in April. He was up with the Giants as a long reliever for three games in 2016 but never got in a game.
Blackburn was warming up in the bullpen during the fourth inning Tuesday night when it appeared starter Nick Martinez was on the ropes. Martinez recovered, however, and pitched into the sixth inning.“I’m a little more relaxed than last time,” he said. “I’ve kind of gotten those nerves out of the way.”
His parents, who now live in San Antonio, and his fiancee, are all in town to see his debut.
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In 13 appearances (12 starts) for Round Rock he has a 4.94 ERA with 51 strikeouts in 62 innings.
“Obviously, I’m anxious and excited for that first time,” he said. “I’m ready to get it over with, but at the same time, it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity so it’s something I don’t want to take for granted.”