PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — “Today especially was kind of an ‘ah-ha’ moment,” Tyler Glasnow said following his best outing of the Spring as the Pirates beat the Phillies 13-8.
It came at a time when he needed to make an impression to compete for the fifth starter spot.
“I don’t have to try and throw 100, I just have to keep things quicker and arm speed a little faster and things kind of work out,” Glasnow added.
Glasnow went four innings, allowed a run on four hits, walked two and struck out five and allowed very little solid contact.
Did Glasnow think he really had to put his foot down this start to solidify a chance at the rotation?
“Kind of, I think, yeah,” Glasnow said. “I walked the first guy and was like ‘let’s go.’ I’m not doing this again. So that second batter is when it kind of kicked into competition mode and everything just kind of washed away.”
“He was letting it rip and was competing extremely well,” said pitching coach Ray Searage. “Look what opened up for him, his change-up opened up especially with a heavy left-handed lineup. Change-up played well and the curve ball played well. He passed with flying colors.”
“This is the first time I’ve really be able to realize how effective a change-up is, or just having more than one or two pitches,” Glasnow said of his ability to mix speed and throw the change-up for strikes. Glasnow also said he was more aggressive than past starts and able to go to his two-seam fastball more than the previous outings.
The 23-year-old came into Saturday’s game with an 8.53 ERA, having struggled in each of his last two appearances — giving up 11 runs in his last five and two-thirds innings. The 6’8” righty credited Searage and his positive attitude for helping him.
Glasnow also batted twice in the third inning, hustling down the line for a single which began the five run frame.
“I always like hitting in-between games because it takes your mind off of pitching and then you can just be athletic and if you look like an idiot, no one says anything because you are a pitcher,” he said.
Glasnow even went first to third on a single to right.
“I looked to right field and I saw he had the ball in his hand and I said ‘well he’s not going to send me’ and I looked over and [Joey] Cora was going nuts and I was like ‘run’ and I just ran and was safe and ended up getting into a rally. It was good.”
• Steven Brault, also fighting for a rotation spot, replaced Glasnow and after 2 scoreless innings, the lefty struggled in the third giving up four runs in two and two-thirds innings. And the problems started early in the 7th. “A leadoff batter walk in my third inning and that’s just inexcusable,” Brault said. “And that was because I got up 1-2 and just tried to get a strikeout and then it all went… [bad]. I talked to Ray [Searage] and it was a little mental weakness and that’s something that has to be better and will be better next time.” Brault’s Spring ERA jumped to 3.66
• Long balls–John Jaso was 2 for 3 with 4 RBI, including his second home run starting in right field. Center fielder Eury Perez hit a solo homer, his first of the Spring. Catcher Elias Diaz also hit his first homer in 2017, also a solo home run.
• The middle infielders, Adam Frazier and Phil Gosselin, combined for three hits, three runs and two RBI. Gosselin and Jose Osuna are team co-leaders with 11 RBI this Spring.
• First baseman Josh Bell got his first hit during exhibition games, a slow roller that was ruled a hit as the fielder made an error trying to cut down Frazier at third. Bell is now batting .059.