Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers snapped a two-game losing streak with a 3-2 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday night behind a strong start from Emmet Sheehan.
The rookie right-hander gave up just two hits and issued one walk while getting through five scoreless innings on 82 pitches. The performance came on the heels of Sheehan allowing a career-high eight runs in his last outing against the Texas Rangers.
“I was definitely feeling a lot better than I did the past couple weeks,” the 23-year-old said after the game. “We put in a lot of work to get back in the right spot mentally, and I think it paid off.”
Among the changes Sheehan made was being more aggressive in the strike zone. “Just being on the attack and trust my stuff in the zone,” he explained. “I think before, I was a little on the defensive, which is not the way I like to pitch.”
Sheehan credited the Dodgers coaches for helping him navigate a challenging week in terms of preparation. “It’s definitely a different week than usual,” he began.
“I think a lot of it was wiping it. Getting with our mental performance guys, getting with our strength guys and pitching coaches obviously to figure out what we need to work on. A lot of work went into it this week and it paid off. We’re going to keep working on it.”
Through his first seven MLB starts, Sheehan is 3-1 with a 5.77 ERA, 4.71 FIP and 1.34 WHIP in 34.1 innings pitched.
Emmet Sheehan benefitting with more experience
Along with the work he put in, Sheehan believes learning from past mistakes allowed him to bounce back against the Reds. “Obviously, you never want to get hit around. But you’ve got to have a learning mentality here, for sure,” Sheehan said.
“You can’t really dwell on it too much. You’ve got to be onto the next one and fix the problem, which I think we did.”
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts removed Sheehan at just 82 pitches in order to help end with positive results.
“Just kind of trying to appreciate what he’s gone through up to this point and what’s going to be expected of him going forward, I wanted him to end on a high note,” Roberts explained.
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