BOSTON (CBS) – For the Boston Red Sox, their annual double-header against Northeastern and Boston College is a tune up for their Spring schedule.
But for the college players taking part in the game, going against a Major League team is something they’ve dreamed about doing for most of their lives.
So imagine the excitement when one of them steps to the plate, and delivers a lead-off single to start it all off. That’s just what Northeastern’s Aaron Barbosa did in his first at-bat Thursday afternoon.
With new Sox closer Joel Hanrahan on the mound, the junior outfielder fell behind 0-2. But Barbosa did not hang his head, and with a fastball coming in smacked a single to start things off.
If that wasn’t enough, Barbosa stole second shortly after. Just a few innings later, he made a highlight catch in right field to rob catcher David Ross of extra bases.
Barbosa On Game vs. Hanrahan:
After doing some damage against the Red Sox, he admits he was a little worried in his second at-bat.
“I was kind of nervous because I had to bat the next inning and (Ross) was still catching at the time. I was hoping he didn’t get too mad at me,” said Barbosa, fearing a pitch inside.
But that chin music was never heard, and even if it was, it wouldn’t have ruined a great experience for the 19-year-old from Dracut.
“Ive been a Red Sox fan my whole life. That makes the experience that much better,” he told WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Drew Moholland.
View: Barbosa’s Bio
“They’re a lot bigger than they look on TV,” he said of the pros. “When you’re standing in the box it’s pretty shocking at first. But once you see the first pitch go by you kind of get back into the mold that you’re just playing baseball.”
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Rod Fritz reports
Barbosa’s single should come as no surprise. Last season, he set Northeastern’s all-time single season hits record with 79.
And despite his success in his first at-bat, Barbosa assures Red Sox fans that Hanrahan will fine as Boston’s new closer.
“He looked pretty good to me,” he said. “I might have just gotten lucky on one swing.”