Mitch Mustain, the highly touted high school quarterback who proved to be a bust at USC and Arkansas, made his professional baseball debut yesterday.
Assigned to rookie-ball by the White Sox after turning a tryout into a minor-league deal in February, the 24-year-old right-hander threw two scoreless innings out of the bullpen.
Mustain hadn’t pitched since high school, so he’s obviously a long shot and presumably the White Sox will move him up the minor-league ladder pretty quickly if he continues to have success against rookie-level hitters a half-dozen years his junior.
Minor League Baseball announced on Wednesday that, for the 14th consecutive season, the league has eclipsed 40 million in total attendance. 20 teams set single-game attendance records and seven teams set franchise records for single-game attendance in their current parks.
ESPN’s Keith Law, who has been covering the minor leagues for quite a while, did the math:
Minor League Baseball president and CEO Pat O’Conner, whose most prominent stint in the public eye involved him disingenuously justifying the underpaying of his players, said, “Minor League Baseball continues to be the best entertainment value in sports, and these numbers support that. For us to top 40 million fans for the 14th consecutive season despite the weather challenges our teams faced in April and May is a testament to the continued support of our loyal fan bases and the creative promotions and hard work done by all of our teams across the country.”
Major and Minor League Baseball are quite happy to make money hand over fist on the backs of their players, but are too cheap to pay them adequately for their labor.