Lutz gets first big league start in finale

Lutz gets first big league start in finale

ST. LOUIS -- Reds rookie Donald Lutz, who was called up on Monday from Double-A Pensacola, made his first Major League start in left field and batted seventh in Wednesday's series finale against the Cardinals, going 0-for-4.

Lutz, who replaced the injured Chris Heisey on the roster, grounded out as a pinch-hitter in his debut on Monday.

"It's really to his advantage to be out there early, because they don't know him," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "Unless they called the Minor Leagues and asked if they played against him to get a scouting report."

Baker told Lutz on Tuesday he would be starting the next game.

"The game is the same. Just be yourself," Baker said he told Lutz. "You signed by being yourself. You advanced through the system by being yourself. So be yourself here. Don't try to do more than you're capable of doing. It's counterproductive. Just play the game."

The first German-developed player in the modern Major Leagues, Lutz is the second product of the MLB International European Academy to play a big league game. The first was Alex Liddi, who debuted for the Mariners in 2011.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.