With HR and 2B, Frazier has debut for ages

With HR and 2B, Frazier has debut for ages

HOUSTON -- The world became a blur as Clint Frazier rounded the bases for his first Major League home run on Saturday evening, elation that turned into confusion when the rookie returned to the visitors' dugout and received the silent treatment from his Yankees teammates.

"I didn't really know what to do," Frazier said after the Yankees' 7-6 loss to the Astros at Minute Maid Park. "Most guys go hopping down [into] the dugout and act like they're high-fiving people. I didn't know what to do, so I just went and got a cup of water."

Ranked as the team's No. 2 prospect and the No. 17 prospect in all of baseball by MLBPipeline.com, the 22-year-old Frazier became the first Yankee since 1913 to double and homer in his Major League debut.

Playing right field with a stars-and-stripes No. 30 stitched on his back, Frazier did not have to wait long for action. George Springer lifted a deep fly that briefly staggered the rookie, who squinted into the roof and LED lighting before securing the first out in the bottom of the first inning.

"It was probably the highest popup I'd ever had hit [to me]," Frazier said. "It's just funny that the first ball hit in a game finds me."

Frazier's first putout

Frazier struck out swinging in his first at-bat, then collected his first hit against Francis Martes in the sixth, a double that eluded left fielder Marwin Gonzalez and sparked a five-run inning. Up in the seating area, parents Kim and Mark cheered, their jubilation forever captured by TV cameras.

Frazier's first Major League hit

His mother shed tears in the seventh inning when Frazier launched a line drive into the Crawford Boxes in left field, a shot calculated at 339 feet by Statcast™. Frazier became the first Yankees rookie to homer in his debut since Tyler Austin and Aaron Judge hit back-to-back blasts last Aug. 13.

Clint Frazier's first career home run induced tears of joy

"As a player, man, he's the total package," Judge said. "He's got speed, he's got power, he can play any outfield position. It's fun to watch a guy like that."

Frazier said that he would give the ball from his first hit to his mom, and the home run to his dad.

"My parents are my role models, and my dad is my hero," Frazier said. "For me to go out there and have this kind of first game for him is really special for the whole Frazier family."

Frazier's parents on callup

Frazier's unforgettable trip started with a tap on his shoulder Friday evening, when Triple-A skipper Al Pedrique summoned him into the visiting manager's office at McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket, R.I.

"This is it," Frazier said he thought. "I'm going up."

As Pedrique rattled off the aspects of Frazier's game that still need improvement, that excitement faded, but Pedrique concluded by telling Frazier that he could work on those things in Houston.

"There was a lot of truth to what he was saying," Frazier said. "That I need to continue to work my defense, my baserunning and just focus on being a good teammate in the clubhouse and just be all ears while I'm here."

That speech followed an eventful spring that included headlines about Frazier's curly red hair, which he eventually trimmed after team officials determined it to be a "distraction." Frazier hopes there are other ways for his personality to shine through.

"I think if I clip my own wings, I'm not going to be able to play the way that I want to," he said. "I think for me, as long as I can be myself without being a distraction or cause harm to the clubhouse or the team, I think I'll be in good shape."

Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and on Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.