Koda Glover has given up four runs on the last two pitches he’s thrown.
Glover, 23, took the mound in Nationals Park in this past Friday’s game with the Philadelphia Phillies with a 4-1 lead, but hit the first batter he faced, walked the second and gave up a game-tying three-run home run by Cameron Rupp.
Washington went on to win the game, 5-4, and Nationals’ skipper Dusty Baker talked after the game about whether or not Glover would be able to put the outing behind him.
“We’ll see,” Baker said. “This is all part of the process. This is all part of the process of being a big leaguer, and the thing about the bullpen, especially late in the game, you have to be able to forget yesterday, you know what I mean. Cause I’ve seen the best give them up, other than Mariano Rivera and he gave them up sometimes.
“The mark of a reliever, and most of them are kind of eccentric and kind of on the crazy side, but they have the ability to forget yesterday, especially if it was bad.”
Baker brought him back out in the eighth in Sunday’s series finale in the nation’s capital, with a 3-1 lead, but the first pitch Glover threw to Freddy Galvis ended up soaring out for a solo shot to center that got the Phillies within one in what ended a 3-2 win for the Nats.
Before this afternoon’s series opener with the New York Mets, Baker was asked if he had any concerns after Glover gave up the second of two home runs, on consecutive pitches.
“I talked to him after the game and I said I couldn’t wait to get him back out there yesterday,” Baker said.
“But his only problem is he’s throwing the ball down the heart of the plate, you know what I mean?
“And I said you play catch, anything you do, you do it with a purpose. And I said, ‘I know it’s hard on you,’ and he goes, ‘Yeah, I’ve never been through this before.’
“Well, Bryce [Harper] has never been through this before either. And so I told him this is part of the process and part of being a big leaguer. If you think you’re just going to come here and just be great all the time. There’s only a few of those who do it over a sustained period of time without having some downfall.”
Drafted in the 8th Round of the 2015 Draft, the hard-throwing 6’5’’ reliever put up a 2.41 ERA with 14 walks and 66 Ks in 56 IP between High-A, Double and Triple-A before he was called up to make his MLB debut.
Through 14 appearances out of the Nationals’ bullpen, Glover has a 5.79 ERA, six walks and 13 Ks in 14 IP.
He’s risen extremely fast, but now it’s about staying in the majors and convincing his manager he can handle the sort of high-leverage opportunities Baker started giving him.
“I’m not worried about him,” Baker said today. “He’s a confident man. He admitted it — and I knew that. I mean, how many of these guys have ever failed, period. This is the first time for a lot of these guys failing in their whole life and you either pick yourself up and learn from it, or it crushes you and then I told him, “Just forget it.’
“You’ve got to forget yesterday or else it carries forward with you.
“So I can’t wait to get him back out there again to see if he’s learned. Might have to do it in a less-pressurized situation initially, but he’s going to be a big part of this team.”