Luetge making most of his time

Luetge making most of his time

Luetge making most of his time
ARLINGTON -- Mariners Rule 5 Draft pick Lucas Luetge is proving to be efficient with his time. The young lefty made his Major League debut Saturday in Oakland and struck out Josh Reddick on three pitches in a key seventh-inning situation in Seattle's 8-7 win.

Then he flew with the team to Dallas on Sunday and caught a quick 30-minute flight to Austin in order to visit his family in nearby Industry, a town of 300 in southeast Texas where his parents own a combination convenience store, gas station and car wash.

Industry is a town with "one blinking red light," he said. A good percentage of the population was in Arlington for Monday night's game, with about 40 friends and relatives made the four-hour drive.

The 24-year-old lefty had never pitched above Double-A ball with the Brewers, but proved his mettle with his first Major League test when called on with two on and one out in Oakland.

"Three pitches, you couldn't ask for anything else, I guarantee you that," said Luetge. "I was surprised I wasn't as nervous as I thought I'd be. It was more just adrenaline and blood flowing. I had to calm myself down a little bit, just playing in front of that many people and the crowd was into it right then because it was a big situation.

"So I kind of just got in the moment and zoned everything else out. I kind of surprised myself at being able to do that," he said. "Everything happened so quick that I wasn't even thinking about it. And once I got that first one over, it helped. I don't think I'll ever forget that moment."

Manager Eric Wedge won't forget it either, the next time he needs to call on the youngster.

"It was impressive," said Wedge. "You never know what you're going to get when a guy goes out there for the first time. Reddick is a good hitter and for him to go out there and get him out in three pitches in that situation, that was good for him. Nice to see it."