It didn’t take long for Max Stassi to make his presence felt with the Houston Astros.
Called up from the Triple-A Fresno Grizzlies a day earlier, the Yuba City High graduate made his 2017 Major League season debut on Tuesday, going 2 for 4 with an RBI double and a solo home run in the Astros’ 9-4 win over the host Arizona Diamondbacks.
Batting seventh in the Astros’ order, the 26-year-old Stassi doubled to left off Diamondbacks starter Anthony Banda in the top of the second, scoring J.D. Davis with the first run of the game. Davis had doubled to right one batter earlier.
Then in the top of the ninth, Stassi hit a two-out solo home run to right center off reliever Francisco Liriano. It was the second home run of his MLB career.
In between those highlights, Stassi flew out to right in the top of the third, popped out to second base in the fourth and drew a walk in the seventh.
Stassi was brought up to play catcher after Houston put Brian McCann on the disabled list with a sore right knee. In Fresno, Stassi was batting .266 with 14 home runs and 12 doubles, a .383 on-base percentage and .473 slugging percentage in 73 Pacific Coast League games.
Stassi has spent time in the majors in each of his last five professional seasons, but has never started a season in the big leagues. His older brother Brock Stassi, 27, was dubbed a feel-good story by some of the Philadelphia media after he began the year on the Phillies roster, but has been sent down to the minors twice, usually to Triple-A Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania and the International League. Brock Stassi was batting .167 with two homers for the Phillies when he was most recently sent to Lehigh Valley on July 21.