Hard-throwing Hunter Greene won his major league debut when the Cincinnati Reds beat the Atlanta Braves 6-3 on Sunday.
Greene (1-0) lived up to his billing as a top prospect with overpowering velocity. He regularly touched 100 mph on the radar gun, topped out at 102 in the fourth and was still hitting triple digits in his final inning. The right-hander allowed three runs, four hits and three walks with seven strikeouts in five innings.
The Reds took a 5-0 lead in the third. Jonathan India walked and scored from first when Tyler Naquin doubled to the right-field corner. Braves starter Ian Anderson (0-1) loaded the bases on a pair of walks, giving up two more runs on a forceout and Colin Moran’s single. Sean Newcomb then gave up a two-run single to Farmer.
Tyler Stephenson made it 6-1 in the fifth with a homer to left off Newcomb.
Greene, at 22 years, became the youngest starting pitcher to make his debut for Cincinnati since Mike Leake received no decision on April 11, 2010, against the Chicago Cubs.
Greene, the second overall draft pick in 2017, is the Reds’ top prospect according to MLB Pipeline and No. 2 according to Baseball America. He missed the 2019 season recovering from Tommy John surgery.
Matt Olson whiffed on a 100 mph fastball in the first for Greene’s first career strikeout, but Olson singled on a 102 mph fastball to begin the fourth for Atlanta’s first hit. After Austin Riley doubled, Olson scored on Marcell Ozuna’s sacrifice fly to make it 5-1.
Travis d’Arnaud and Olson homered in the fifth off Greene to trim the lead to 6-3. It marked Olson’s first homer since he replaced Freddie Freeman as the Braves’ everyday first baseman after getting traded from Oakland and signing a $168 million, eight-year contract.
Each team won twice in the four-game series to open the season.