Paulsen Makes Most Of MLB Debut

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By CU SID

CLEMSON, S.C. (CU SID) -- Former Tiger Ben Paulsen was called up to the majors with the Colorado Rockies on Monday and made his MLB debut that night as the starter at first base against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field in Denver, Colo. He went 2-for-4 with an RBI, as he totaled a team-high two hits from the sixth spot in the lineup.

In his first career plate appearance, he laced a second-inning single to left field, then lined a run-scoring single to left-center in the sixth inning for his first career RBI.

The Acworth, Ga. native batted .291 with 15 homers, six triples, 24 doubles, 47 RBIs and a .380 on-base percentage in 95 games with the Colorado Springs (AAA) SkySox in 2014.

Paulsen, son of former Clemson Assistant Coach (2003-10) and current Winthrop Head Coach Tom Riginos (2011-present), became the 52nd Tiger in history to play in an MLB game and the seventh Tiger in 2014. He also became the fourth member of the 2009 Clemson team to don a major league uniform, joining lefthander Chris Dwyer, infielder Brad Miller and infielder Kyle Parker. Parker and Paulsen have been teammates in the Rockies organization at different levels.

In three years (2007-09) as a Tiger, Paulsen batted .318 with 31 homers, five triples, 34 doubles and 130 RBIs in 182 games. He was drafted in the third round (No. 90 overall pick) by the Rockies in 2009 after his best season as a Tiger. That year, he hit .367 with 13 homers and 61 RBIs in 66 games.

Paulsen had a career .277 batting average, 78 homers, 33 triples, 142 doubles, 375 RBIs and 15 steals in 648 minor league games from 2009-14. Earlier in July, he was selected to the Triple-A All-Star Game.

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