Cardinals’ Daniel Poncedeleon Tosses Gem In MLB Debut After Brain Surgery

A lot can change in a year.

Such is the case for St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Daniel Poncedeleon, who made his Major League Baseball debut Monday night against the Cincinnati Reds just 14 months after suffering a life-threatening injury.

While Poncedeleon was pitching for the Triple-A Memphis Redbirds in May 2017, he was struck in the head by a line drive, which ultimately not only put his career in danger, but also his life as he needed emergency brain surgery.

However, Poncedeleon stepped onto an MLB mound for the first time for the Cardinals on Monday, and to say he was spectacular would be an understatement. The 26-year-old tossed seven no-hit innings, with three walks and as many strikeouts.

He was pulled after the seventh with 116 pitches thrown, and unfortunately St. Louis’ bullpen couldn’t hold on for the combined no-hit bid as the Reds would squeak out a 2-1 win.

Regardless of the outcome, the debut Poncedeleon had is a positive step for the pitcher in the big leagues, who already is having a strong season in Triple-A with a 9-3 record coupled with a 2.15 ERA.

Thumbnail photo via David Kohl/USA TODAY Sports Images

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