At 19 years of age, Tyler Glasnow is finding out there's still plenty to learn about pitching, even from game to game. When the Pirates prospect took the mound in the bullpen before Tuesday's doubleheader, he felt lost.
"I used to be, 'Ugh, it's gonna be a 10-walk game,'" Glasnow said. "Now, I'll be a little frustrated -- I want to have my stuff -- but now I can cope with it, I know anything can happen."
Glasnow overcome early command issues and allowed one hit over six innings to win his third straight start as Class A West Virginia edged Kannapolis, 1-0, in the first game of a doubleheader at Appalachian Power Park.
The Pirates' No. 17 prospect struck out six and walked one of the 22 batters he faced. His six innings matched a career high and marked the second time in three starts that the right-hander has pitched six frames.
"I felt kind of weird in the warmups before the game, I tried to not think of anything, just go up there and throw, let instincts take over," the 6-foot-7 starter said. "In the first inning, I was missing high really bad, so I tried throwing it low and it just corrected itself over time."
Despite the iffy command, Glasnow struck out the side in a perfect first before whiffing Kale Kiser to end the second. He fanned one in the third, worked another 1-2-3 frame in the fourth and punched out Keon Barnum to begin the fifth, his only troublesome inning of the game.
Mike Marjama worked a one-out walk, Kiser followed with a single to shortstop and Glasnow induced a fielder's choice grounder that put runners on the corners for Juan Ramirez, who walked to load the bases. Glasnow escaped the jam by popping up Nick Basto before tossing a perfect sixth to end his afternoon.
"Bases loaded and I walked two that inning, and then I just went first-pitch strike to that guy and he popped up, which was good," Glasnow said. "I'm glad I got out of that inning."
Jhondaniel Medina struck out one in the seventh to earn his third save, and the Power went on to sweep the doubleheader with a 5-1 win in Game 2.
For Glasnow, the command advernture is one he's experienced before in his career, mainly last year with Class A Short-Season State College and the Rookie-level Gulf Coast Pirates. The young righty is learning to trust his arm, his coach and his focus in battling on the mound.
"My pitching coach Jeff Johnson, he's the person that's been like, 'You need to not think of anything.' And I'm like, 'What do you mean? I've got to think more,'" Glasnow said. "But everything he's told me this year has been right. You really just have to bear down and you'll find it, and sure enough, I did."
Glasnow's numbers this season reflect his maturity. After Tuesday's gem, he improved to 7-2 with a 2.27 ERA with 122 strikeouts over 87 1/3 innings.
"I've had a good foundation, but a lot earlier in Rookie ball, I would feel so bad before a game and get in and do well," he said. "It's baseball."
Glasnow said he's satisfied with the innings West Virginia is letting him pitch.
"I feel like they're getting more trust in me to go longer in games," he said. "I like going six innings. It would have been frustrating [coming out after six] if I had a perfect game. I'm cool with Medina coming in to close it out."
West Virginia manufactured the game's only run in the fifth on one hit when Walker Gourley singled, stole second, advanced to third on a passed ball and came home on a grounder by Jonathan Schwind.
Intimidators starter Jefferson Olacio (4-10) struck out six and allowed the game's lone run -- unearned -- on three hits over six frames to suffer the loss.
Glasnow has pitched well since turning in a rough outing May 28. He's allowed three earned runs or fewer in nine of his last 10 starts. He struck out a season-high 10 batters on June 22 against Lakewood, worked six innings for the first time on July 9 at Kannapolis and has surrendered just one earned run over his last three outings.
"Probably the biggest thing is not getting overwhelmed with one at-bat or one inning, just let things go," he said. "Resilience, that's what I'm working on a lot."