Greenberg described himself as “humbled” and “thrilled” when asked how he felt about returning to the major leagues after seven seasons. Since hes grown up playing professional baseball is “all I’ve ever wanted to do” Greenberg told ESPN’s Baseball Tonight.
Greenberg saw his major league career ended in his first at-bat.
Pinch hitting in the ninth inning against the Florida Marlins, Greenberg was hit in the back of his head by a 92mph fastball by Valerio de los Santos on the first pitch of his big league career.
“I never got to play major league baseball, I never made it to first base.” Greenberg recalls. Carlos Zambrano pinch ran for him and later came around to score in the inning.
Unfortunately Greenberg never recovered from the concussion like symptoms and then fell out of minors. While playing independent ball Greenberg would face De Los Santos in 2011 and would single.
The story did not end there though. An online petition was started as a plea to get Greenberg an at-bat. Matt Liston,a Cubs fan and aspiring filmmaker, collected over 200,000 signatures.
The Marlins, the team for Greenberg was playing against, opted to sign the now 31 year old and give him his at-bat.
That at-bat will come on October 2 against the New York Mets and Cy Young candidate and 20 game winner RA Dickey.
In case you were wondering about players with one at-bats, I have already done the work for you courtesy of wikipedia.
His [Greenberg’s] career on-base percentage is 1.000 and, having zero at-bats and no chances on defense, he has no batting average or fielding percentage. While many players have had careers consisting of a single at-bat, Fred Van Dusen is the only other player to be hit with a pitch in his first and only plate appearance without taking the field. That was on September 11, 1955, while Van Dusen was playing for the Philadelphia Phillies. Three other players who did take to the field have been hit by a pitch in their only Major League plate appearance: Ham Wade in 1907, Harvey Grubb in 1912, and Cy Malis in 1934.