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Bearcats in the Big Leagues: Walsh and Atkinson Have Strong Debuts at Next Levels

After being promoted a day earlier, both Connor Walsh and Ryan Atkinson put together solid performances in their debuts with new clubs.

Chicago White Sox v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

Josh Harrison

Petco Park, home to the San Diego Padres, is not considered a haven for hitters. Harrison and his Pittsburgh Pirates are tangling with the Padres at Petco this weekend and thus far the former Bearcat has not been able to find a ton of offensive success, as he went 0-for-3 on Saturday after going hitless on Friday as well. He did walk in one of his four plate appearances in the second game of the series but in all posted a WPA (win probability added) below zero as the Pirates lost 4-2. In his career, Harrison has actually fared pretty well in San Diego, slashing .333/.385/.479 in 52 career plate appearances. Maybe Sunday will be the day he gets back to that line of success.

Ian Happ

After two days off, Happ returned to the starting lineup for the Chicago Cubs against the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday. However, the rest did not lead to improved results at the plate, as Happ went 0-for-2 with two strikeouts and a walk. Happ has still produced at a respectable, if not strong, rate this season, slashing .247/.320/.493 with a wRC+ of 108, but this slump he’s in has been stretching out longer than he, or the Cubs, would like.

Connor Walsh

In his first appearance for the Triple-A Charlotte Knights, Walsh was a little erratic, hitting a batter and giving up a hit, but he also didn’t give up a run in his lone inning of work during an 8-1 loss to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RaildRiders.

Ryan Atkinson

Atkinson also made his debut after a promotion, starting for the Jackson Generals against the Mobile BayBears. Although he didn’t pitch too deeply into the game, Atkinson put together a solid start that was enough to earn him a win as the Generals rolled to an 8-1 victory. Atkinson pitched into the sixth inning and allowed just one run on five hits and three walks while striking out six batters.