Nothing can stop the Yermín-ator. The breakout star for the White Sox has already had quite the eventful 2020, and we’re still in the season’s first month. After spending eight years in the Minor Leagues (minus one plate appearance for Chicago last season), Yermín Mercedes started this season by getting hits in his first eight at-bats. Since then, he’s stayed hot and was leading the American League in batting average entering Monday’s Patriots’ Day matinee against the Red Sox.
Well, the longtime catcher — who has only played as the designated hitter in the Major Leagues — finally got to put on a glove and make his debut in the field. Except Mercedes didn’t take over first base or one of the outfield corners. Oh no, the slugger — who went 1-for-4 on Monday — went from DH to the pitcher’s mound. Eat your heart out, Shohei Ohtani.
While it was fun watching Mercedes out on the mound, Ohtani’s status as the best two-way player in the game is probably safe. With his cap given a decidedly Fernando Rodney-esque tilt, Mercedes threw a mix of mid-80s fastballs and low-70s junk en route to giving up three hits, two walks and a run in his lone inning of work. After Mercedes left, another position player in Danny Mendick relieved him.
While White Sox fans won’t be celebrating the 11-4 loss to Boston, they can cheer a record that’s all their own: Chicago is the only team in baseball history to have both a Mercedes and a Benz pitch for the team.