Arroyo pitches to Panik in battle of former Giants top picks originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
While Panik, the No. 29 overall pick in the 2011 MLB Draft, helped the Giants win the World Series in 2014 and was a 2015 NL All-Star, his career in San Francisco fizzled out over the next few seasons and he was released in 2019.
Arroyo, the No. 25 overall pick in the 2013 MLB Draft, had his moments as a rookie in 2017, but was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays in the Evan Longoria deal.
Normally that wouldn’t be noteworthy, except Arroyo was called on to pitch Sunday in Boston’s blowout 18-4 loss to Toronto at Fenway Park and he got the chance to face Panik.
After Red Sox utility man Marwin Gonzalez pitched a scoreless eighth inning, manager Alex Cora turned to Arroyo in the ninth. Arroyo walked Jonathan Davis to lead off the final frame, but got Panik to ground into a double play.
Unfortunately for Arroyo, he wasn’t able to get out of the inning unscathed. Gonzalez, who moved to second base after his inning on the mound, made an error that allowed Bo Bichette to reach. That brought up Sacramento native Rowdy Tellez.
The Elk Grove High School alum homered on a 81.9 mph changeup from Arroyo.
Arroyo got Teoscar Hernandez to fly out to end the inning. Because of the error, the 26-year-old still has a spotless ERA.
No one could have envisioned eight years ago that Arroyo would be pitching to Panik in a matchup of two of the best teams in the AL East. But baseball can be unpredictable and that’s one of the things that makes the sport so great.
So if Joey Bart is pitching to Marco Luciano in a random game in 2029, don’t act surprised.