Liberty’s Connor Brogdon stays composed in second trip
Courtesy of Cheryl Pursell Former Liberty pitcher Connor Brogdon hasn’t allowed a run in his last four outings with the Philadelphia Phillies.
Hoping not to jinx anything, but former Liberty pitcher Connor Brogdon is working on a four outing, 6 2/3 scoreless streak for the Philadelphia Phillies.
“I’ve been trying to be a little bit more relaxed and composed,” he said of his success. “I took time to breathe a little bit more between pitches.”
Brogdon made his Major League Baseball debut Aug. 13 and had three outings before he was sent down. In those three outings, he allowed five runs, including three home runs.
He came up for a game on Sept. 13 and tossed 2 1/3 scoreless innings before he was sent to the team’s alternate site.
“The first time could be pointed to nerves,” he said. “I really didn’t work on anything, mechanically at the alternate site. It was primarily nerves.”
He came back up two days later and has had three straight scoreless outings, including picking up his first victory.
“It was really cool to get the first win,” he said. “I wish I wouldn’t have walked that run in. It wasn’t my run so that makes it even worse. It was the guy ahead of me. It’s something you dream of when pitching in the big leagues to get your first win. It’s a good feeling, for sure.”
After an off day Thursday, the Phillies head to Tampa to face the Rays for an important three-game series with a playoff berth on the line.
“We are making a playoff push and it’s exciting to be a part of that in my rookie year,” he said. He made an impression on the big club and was added to the 40-man playoff pool, announced Sunday.
“It’s definitely a good feeling knowing the organization thinks me of a guy that will help them out in the postseason,” he said.
Brogdon came in relief in the ninth inning of Wednesday’s victory over the Washington Nationals. He threw just eight pitches to get three outs.
“Hopefully, I can keep that rolling through the rest of the season,” he said. “When I get my chance, I will try to make the most of it.”
Wednesday’s outing lowered Brogdon’s ERA to 4.82 over 9 1/3 innings. He has 11 strikeouts and five walks, just two in his last six-plus innings. He has allowed just one hit since his last call-up. “If there’s one thing that changed is I’ve been using my fastball a little bit more,” he said. “After I gave up a home run on the first pitch of my career on a fastball, I became a little tentative to use it. I’m trusting it again and it has been a help to me. My change-up has been my put-away pitch in the minor leagues and it has become that in the big leagues. It’s a matter of sequencing. I’m trying to tunnel those pitches. I’m trying to have my change-up come out of the same slot and height as my fastball. If I go with an elevated fastball, I try to run the change-up off of that.”
When Brogdon got the call to the majors in August, he was playing video games. Like the first time, when he got his most recent call, Brogdon was, again, playing video games.
“It seems to be my good luck charm,” he said. “I need to play more.”