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Youth is served with Garcia's home run

Nats No. 2 prospect is first big leaguer born in 2000s to go deep
At 20 years and 93 days old, Luis Garcia became the first player born in the 2000s to homer in the Major Leagues. (Julio Cortez/AP)
August 17, 2020

With apologies to actor Bernie Mac of "Mr. 3000" fame, Luis Garcia has first dibs on "Mr. 2000." The No. 2 Nationals prospect slugged his first Major League homer in his first at-bat of Monday's 7-6 loss to the Braves at Truist Park. Garcia's two-run blast off right-hander Touki Toussaint

With apologies to actor Bernie Mac of "Mr. 3000" fame, Luis Garcia has first dibs on "Mr. 2000."

The No. 2 Nationals prospect slugged his first Major League homer in his first at-bat of Monday's 7-6 loss to the Braves at Truist Park. Garcia's two-run blast off right-hander Touki Toussaint also made a little bit of history. He became the first player born in the 2000s to reach the seats as a big leaguer. Garcia will wake up Tuesday morning 20 years and 94 days old.

Atlanta rallied for the victory on a pair of two-run homers by Adam Duvall and Dansby Swanson in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Promoted from Washington's alternate site in Fredericksburg, Virginia, on Friday, Garcia joined other early-20's regulars Juan Soto (21), Carter Kieboom (22) and Victor Robles (23). Batting sixth in the Nats' lineup, the second baseman walloped Toussaint's first-pitch fastball an estimated 410 feet over the fence in right-center field at a 100.6 mph exit velocity. In an ironic twist, Garcia was promoted to replace Starlin Castro, who fractured his wrist Friday. Castro was the first player born in the 1990s to hit a home run as a Major Leaguer.

“I feel good,” Garcia told reporters after the game. “I feel great to be here. I want to be here for a long time, and now I'm so excited, so happy to be here and be a good teammate.”

Garcia hit into tough luck in his next at-bat, lining into an unassisted double play with the bases loaded in the third. He sandwiched a pair of strikeouts in the fifth and ninth around a comebacker to right-hander Huascar Ynoa in the seventh.

The New York City-born, Dominican Republic-raised Garcia debuted with a bang, collecting two hits and two RBIs on Friday against the Orioles. Through three games, he has driven in four runs, going 3-for-13 with a homer and a double.

“The kid’s a player,” Washington skipper Dave Martinez told reporters after the game. “He loves to play the game. He goes up there, he works good at-bats, he battles. You watch him, he’s pretty smart. All you’ve got to do is tell him once where to play, and he’s got it. You don’t have to move him around. He’s going to get it. He’s going to learn. He loves being here, we love having him. He’s got a lot of energy. He’s always cheering for his teammates. He’s a lot of fun to be around.”

Signed as an international free agent in 2016, Garcia compiled a .281/.312/.373 slash line in parts of three Minor League seasons. At 17 years old, he was the youngest player in the Class A South Atlantic League in 2017 as well as the youngest in the Class A Advanced Carolina League later that year after he was promoted following his 18th birthday. Garcia spent all of 2019 with Double-A Harrisburg, where he batted .257/280/.337 in a career-high 129 games.

Top Nationals prospect Carter Kieboom singled and walked in four plate appearances.

Ynoa, the No. 11 Braves prospect, yielded two hits and struck out four over three scoreless innings out of the bullpen.

In other action:

Cubs 5, Cardinals 4 (second game)

Ricardo Sanchez looked as thought he might be a part of an historic night in his Major League debut, but it was not to be. St. Louis' 30th-ranked prospect struck out the first batter he faced as a big leaguer and whiffed three overall while walking two in two hitless innings of relief. No. 30 Genesis Cabrera surrendered a run on a walk with one punchout in 1 1/3 innings. Top prospect Dylan Carlson went 0-for-4 in the nightcap after going hitless in three at-bats in the first game. Cubs No. 25 prospect Tyson Miller got the start and allowed two runs on a hit and three walks in two innings in his Major League debut. Box score

Mets 11, Marlins 4

It wasn't a textbook example, but Franklyn Kilomé added another first to his big league ledger. New York's No. 15 prospect earned his first Major League save the old-fashioned way, allowing two runs while completing the final three innings. Kilome kept Miami off the board in the seventh and eighth before surrendering a pair in the ninth. The 25-year-old allowed four hits and five walks with four strikeouts in his second appearance. Top prospect Andres Gimenez entered the game as a defensive replacement in the seventh and went 0-for-2. Marlins' 10th-ranked prospect Monte Harrison doubled in his lone plate appearance in the ninth and scored a run. Box score

Astros 2, Rockies 1

Brandon Bielak won his first game since moving into the rotation Aug. 6 during arguably his best outing to date. Houston's No. 13 prospect allowed one hit, a solo homer to Trevor Story, and four walks while striking out four in six innings. Bielak (3-0) has a 1.69 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP in five appearances, including three starts. No. 29 Blake Taylor surrendered a leadoff single in the ninth, but retired the next three batters to secure his first Major League save. Third-ranked Abraham Toro went hitless in four at-bats. Box score

Twins 4, Royals 1

Kansas City’s seventh-ranked prospect Kris Bubic was tagged for the loss after allowing a pair of runs on four hits and four walks while fanning four over 4 1/3 innings. The southpaw hasn't yielded more than two earned runs in three of his four starts this season. Box score

Yankees 6, Red Sox 3

Right-hander Michael King earned his first Major League victory after giving up one run on three hits over three innings of relief. New York’s 26th-ranked prospect whiffed a pair and sports a 1.10 WHIP in four appearances this year. Box score

Padres 14, Rangers 4

San Diego’s 19th-ranked prospect Jake Cronenworth opened the scoring for the Padres with an RBI double to the gap in left-center field in the second. Cronenworth is batting .302/.362/.585 with nine extra-base hits and six RBIs this season. Box score

Dodgers 11, Mariners 9

Evan White recorded his first multi-homer game as a Major Leaguer and drove in a career-high three runs as Seattle fell short in Los Angeles. The No. 5 Mariners prospect has gone deep three times in the past three days and has six roundtrippers this season. Justin Dunn endured his worst outing of the season. Seattle’s No. 8 prospect allowed six runs on five hits, a walk and hit a batter while fanning one in two innings. No. 24 Taylor Guilbeau worked around a walk and a hit, striking out one in his lone frame. Box score

Michael Avallone is a writer for Follow him on Twitter @MavalloneMiLB.