Outfielder Nick Heath shines in D-backs debut in opposition to the Nationals
Nick Heath (Twitter Photo / @ Dbacks)
In 36 hours, outfielder Nick Heath switched from training in Arkansas at the alternative location of the Kansas City Royals to the 3: 4 victory in Sedona Red for the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday.
“The last few days have been a roller coaster ride of emotion,” Heath told reporters of Zoom after the D-Backs beat the Nationals 5-2. “After being told that I was removed from the list, got DFA approved, and just hung around my hotel room for a few days, obviously waiting to see what was going on.
“Crazy enough, here I am in DC instead of northwest Arkansas and you go out and have a great day with the new squad. As I said, these last few days have been a roller coaster ride of emotions, but it works out as it should. “
The D-Backs acquired the 27-year-old on Saturday from the Kansas City Royals for right-hander Eduardo Herrera.
But when Tim Locastro was placed in the IL on Sunday after injuring his pinky finger, Heath was brought on to start in midfield.
“When I showed up I didn’t know what to expect,” said Heath. “I didn’t know what role I was going to be in … It’s pretty difficult, these guys are losing someone they’ve had for a while, so the goal for me right now is to just jump in and be able to do the role to take on role. “
“Whatever they ask of me, I will do my best and I will put everything on the field for this team,” he added.
In his first bat for the D-Backs, Heath threw a hit into midfield for a single that promoted Eduardo Escobar to second base. Heath followed with a flyout in the fourth and two more singles in the seventh and eighth.
Heath said the energy and positive attitude of his new teammates helped make the day an easy transition to the new team.
“To be able to get out of here and be yourself and know that these guys are pulling for you even though you’re the new guy on the block, man, that’s pretty awesome,” he said.
For manager Torey Lovullo, it was a welcome sight for an injury-related outfield.
“He was in a very stressful position and had a really nice approach in the middle of the field. … He got down to earth and did a really good job on his first day, ”Lovullo said of Zoom. “I’m sure there was a lot of nervous energy, I probably didn’t have a great appetite to play that baseball game this morning or last night, but it was a fine day for him.”
Heath made his MLB debut with the Royals last season, racking up two hits with three RBIs and playing .154 in 15 games. So far, the outfielder went 2-13 in 15 games in the 2021 season before being named DFA by Kansas City.