It has the potential to be a matchup that, ten years down the road from now, you’d pay just about anything to have seen in the minor leagues.
Top Yankees pitching prospect Dellin Betances is slated to take the ball for the Trenton Thunder later tonight in Harrisburg, Pa. He’ll face a Senators lineup that includes Bryce Harper, who is widely considered to be the best prospect in all of baseball.
If you’re drooling at the thought of it, well…I can’t blame you. But if you’re expecting those between the lines to be as excited? Not so fast.
“I’m just excited to pitch, to be honest with you,” Betances said.
“I met him in Washington in the rookie development program, he’s a good guy. But he’s just like anybody else. Obviously, the hype is around him and he’s a great hitter, but I just need to do my job, which is pitch.”
Trenton skipper Tony Franklin was excited about the opportunity to witness such a matchup, but also realizes there’s a bigger task at hand.
“I know the hype surrounding these two is tremendous and well it should be, but I’m approaching it just like I do almost every other game,” he said.
“I want guys to be able to play well, and hopefully everything kind of falls into place for us. If we do that, we’ll give ourselves a chance to win. But I’m sure the kid is a pretty good player. Betances is a pretty good pitcher. But I’ve got to stay focused on what I’m trying to accomplish with this ballclub.”
It’s fair to say that Betances will be able to enjoy Harper’s performances when he isn’t the one in charge of trying to shut him down.
“It’ll be fun to watch him, definitely,” Betances said.
“But I’ve pitched against Major League guys, so I mean it isn’t too big. But it’ll definitely be fun to watch just having seen him and heard a lot about him.”
Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com