EUGENE, Ore. — Bryant’s Ben Wells pitched in his first official game as a professional on[more] Friday night. Starting the season-opener for the Boise Hawks, the Chicago Cubs’ short-season Class A entry in the Northwest League, Wells threw five innings, allowing two runs on five hits with two walks and four strikeouts against the Eugene Emeralds of the San Diego Padres organization.
Wells, a right-hander, was drafted in June 2010 by the Cubs in the seventh round of the Major League Amateur draft after he pitched a five-inning perfect game to lead the Bryant Hornets to the Class 7A State championship in May 2010, earning the State tournament MVP award.
On Friday, Wells worked a 1-2-3 first, earning his first strikeout to end the inning. In the second, Eugene managed a run to cut into Boise’s 2-0 lead. A single, a walk, a groundout and a sacrifice fly produced the run.
In the third, Wells worked around a lead-off double, again ending the inning with a strikeout. Another double, this time with one out, was hit off of Wells in the bottom of the fourth. He also hit a batter for forced both to be stranded with his third strikeout to end the frame.
Eugene cut into Boise’s 4-1 lead in the fifth. The Emeralds loaded the bases on a ground-rule double, a bunt single and a walk. Wells induced a doubleplay ball but the run scored on the play. Wells then finished his debut with his fourth strikeout, stranding the potential go-ahead run at third.
He wound up with no decision as Eugene rallied to tie the game in the sixth then pushed home what proved to be the winning run in the eighth for a 5-4 win.
Congrats, Ben! Good write-up Rob.