Daniel Vogelbach’s previous 412 major league appearances had been in uniform for the Mariners, Blue Jays, Brewers and Pirates.
His debut for the Mets, in front of a crowd engaged in the heat of a pennant race on Sunday night, was something different.
“It was awesome,” Vogelbach said after the Mets’ 8-5 win over the Padres in front of 39,395 at Citi Field. “I don’t know if I played in an environment like that, at least with the home team. It’s kind of cool to call it my pitch now.
Vogelbach, acquired Friday from the Pirates, started at DH and finished 1 for 3 with a walk. His single topping the fifth was the Mets’ first hit of the game against Joe Musgrove.
Although Vogelbach was 0-7 for life against Musgrove, manager Buck Showalter was eager to deploy his new southpaw bat. Showalter noted that Yankees left-hander Jordan Montgomery will pitch against the Mets on Tuesday, and it was important to get Vogelbach involved before he becomes obsolete waiting for a chance.
“I think people kind of rallied around his first success as a Met,” Showalter said. “It felt good in the dugout for a lot of reasons. He had a great walk, that’s what he does. It’s good to see him off to a good start.”
Vogelbach’s walk came in the sixth inning, starting another rally after Pete Alonso’s three-run homer. Luis Guillorme brought in Vogelbach with a bloop single. Guillorme then scored on Tomas Nido’s brace, stretching the Mets’ lead to 5-1.
“I’ve played Vogie since we were kids – we played each other on the Florida travel ball circuit in high school,” Alonso said. “I know he’s got juice, he’s got pop in his bat, but his plate discipline is great as well. He’s a great player. I know he will help us win a lot of games.