Tyler Greene's First Big MLB Day

New St. Louis Cardinals shortstop Tyler Greene recaps his first day as a major leaguer and how he got there.

Not only did Tyler Greene receive his first-ever call to the major leagues on Wednesday night, the 25-year-old found himself in manager Tony La Russa's starting lineup against the Nationals in Washington.

The natural shortstop contributed defensively to the win with four putouts and an assist. Offensively, the right-handed hitter collected his first big-league hit on an RBI single in the Cards' big ninth inning and a few minutes later, stole third base as well.

Just 24 hours earlier, Greene was enjoying an off-day with Triple-A Memphis. Then as a result of Brendan Ryan's hamstring injury, everything changed. I spoke with Greene looking back on his big and busy day on Wednesday.

Congratulations, Tyler. How was it to be able to contribute?

"Feels great. Especially that we got the win. It makes it that much easier to celebrate."

Tell me about your first hit as a major leaguer…

"With the bases loaded, I was just trying to get something out over the plate. (Former Cardinal Julian) Tavarez is a guy that has a lot of movement so I was out front and cued it over to third. I just put it in the right spot, I guess."

On stealing third base and scoring.

"It was nice to get that extra run after the move over to third. Barden did a good job. He got a good pitch that he could drive out to right. It was an RBI for him."

How are you doing, given all that's happened in the last 24 hours?

"It's been fun. It has definitely been a dream come true. It was awesome getting that call. It was surreal at first. Battling through it and being here tonight, it kind of becomes reality. It is definitely nice to start it that way.

When did you learn you were being called up?

"Last night (Wednesday) probably about 11 o'clock. Got the call. The wife and I packed up some suitcases and tried to get as much sleep as we could and headed out in the morning. It's a great experience. I wouldn't have it any other way."

When do you think you turned the corner in your career?

"The big turning event was after the injuries. I wouldn't say like an eye opener, as I have always worked hard to get here. I think it was kind of a gut check when you're sitting out and watching guys you were drafted with and were playing with move up the chain and you're in rehab. I think that was a big motivator to really make the necessary adjustments, the changes. I played as hard as I could as fast as I could to get here.

"The adjustments helped me slow the game down. That's the big thing that really allowed me to play my game."

Your ability to play multiple positions had to help your chances. When did you start down that path?

"The first time was at the beginning of '08. They told me they wanted me to play a little third (base) then. As far as a real statement, that was out in Arizona. (2008 Arizona Fall League) In all those games, I really only played short twice. The rest of the time I played second and third. I didn't mind. I knew I had the ability to play shortstop. If I took it the right way and got better playing other positions too, it would help me get closer, especially here with Tony who loves versatility."

Thank you Tyler, and congratulations on your first day as a major leaguer.

Thank you.



Brian Walton can be reached via email at brian@thecardinalnation.com. Catch his Cardinals commentary daily at his blog, The Cardinal Nation.

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