Chaska cheers for Hand's MLB debut

  • Article by: PHIL MILLER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 7, 2011 - 12:54 PM

The lefthander will pitch his first game in the majors tonight for the Marlins.


Brad Hand in high school

Photo: David Brewster, Star Tribune

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Brad Hand doesn't figure to be too flustered to pitch when he makes his major league debut Tuesday against the Atlanta Braves. The Chaska, Minn., native survived a dress rehearsal against the Twins in March.

"If he was ever going to be nervous, that was it -- his first time against starting major leaguers, facing his hometown Twins, lots of Minnesota people there. And he was fine," Chaska banker Lon Hand said of his son's three-inning stint in Fort Myers for the Florida Marlins on March 14. "He didn't have a three-ball count in three innings, so I don't think he'll be too jittery. He pounded the strike zone the way he's supposed to."

That's what the Marlins are looking for Tuesday, when Hand, the Star Tribune's Metro Player of the Year in 2008 for leading the Hawks into the state tournament, fills in for Florida starter Josh Johnson.

"It's pretty amazing," Lon Hand said of his son, who is in his first full season at Class AA. Rising to the major leagues just two months past his 21st birthday "was never part of Bradley's plan, but the Marlins told him this spring that he wasn't as far away as he thought. I guess you never know."

Johnson, the Marlins' ace righthander -- who coincidentally was also born in Minneapolis -- is on the disabled list because of a sore shoulder, and Florida considered four minor leaguers before settling on Hand, whose fastball reaches 93 mph. His progress this season -- he's 7-1 with a 3.53 ERA in 11 starts for Jacksonville -- convinced the Marlins to jump Hand two levels to make Tuesday's spot start.

Hand's call home Sunday night set off some airline-ticket frenzy in Chaska. His mother, Barb, sister Morgan and one set of grandparents are already in Florida to watch him pitch in the minors, but now another 20 Minnesotans, including Chaska Mayor Mark Windschitl and city administrator Matt Podhradsky, plan to fly south to be in Sun Life Stadium for Tuesday's game.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Minnesota 94 FINAL
Philadelphia 103
Houston 93 FINAL
Boston 87
Portland 99 FINAL
Atlanta 105
Sacramento 90 FINAL
Cleveland 101
Toronto 127 FINAL
Brooklyn 122
Dallas 93 FINAL
Miami 72
LA Clippers 103 FINAL
New Orleans 108
Golden State 100 FINAL
Utah 110
Chicago 93 FINAL
Phoenix 99
Pittsburgh 2 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 1
St. Louis 3 FINAL(SO)
Carolina 2
Nashville 0 FINAL
Colorado 3
Buffalo 2 FINAL
Vancouver 5
Chicago 4 FINAL
Anaheim 1
Harvard 75 FINAL
Princeton 72
Quinnipiac 57 FINAL
Canisius 63
Brown 49 FINAL
Cornell 57
Siena 79 FINAL
Manhattan 87
Marist 65 FINAL
Niagara 61
Dartmouth 51 FINAL
Penn 58
Oregon 68 FINAL
Arizona State 67
Yale 63 FINAL
Columbia 59
Monmouth 60 FINAL
Fairfield 59
Western Ill 63
Oregon State 34 FINAL
Arizona 57
Kent State 55 FINAL
Buffalo 80
Canisius 75 FINAL
Monmouth 58
Butler 67 FINAL
Providence 59
Cornell 65 FINAL
Brown 52
Columbia 47 FINAL
Yale 55
Coll of Charleston 47 FINAL
Drexel 64
Penn 55 FINAL
Dartmouth 39
Elon 60 FINAL
James Madison 89
(19) Princeton 96 FINAL
Harvard 46
(9) Florida State 82 FINAL
Georgia Tech 62
Quinnipiac 87 FINAL
Siena 62
Richmond 54 FINAL
Rhode Island 50
Loyola-Chicago 58 FINAL
Southern Ill 64
Georgetown 52 FINAL
DePaul 93
Villanova 75 FINAL
Marquette 59
Wichita State 70 FINAL
Northern Iowa 51
Xavier 65 FINAL
Creighton 74
Bradley 58 FINAL
Illinois State 55
Missouri State 89 FINAL
Drake 94
Arizona 48 FINAL
Utah 62
(11) Arizona State 68 FINAL
Colorado 60
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: How optimistic are you about the 2015 Twins?

Weekly Question