JUPITER, Fla. – It wasn’t the first start Trevor Rosenthal was hoping for.
In his first chance to make a statement in the competition for the fifth spot in the Cardinals starting rotation, the right-hander allowed five hits, four runs, two walks and had no strikeouts in two innings.
“I was just excited to get out there and tried to maybe do a little bit too much,” Rosenthal said. “The tempo got away from me a little bit and I’ll just learn from it and try to slow it down more and execute pitches a little bit better."
“Anytime you go out there and compete the results are going to be something your thinking about but you try not to dwell on it and learn from it and make the adjustments and move on and gain some ground next time out.”
Rosenthal allowed a lead-off triple to the Marlins’ Juan Pierre in the first inning, he scored on a groundout from Giancarlo Stanton to make it 1-0. Back-to-back two out hits to Joe Mahoney and Donovan Solano plated a second run in the inning.
The second inning wasn’t much better as Rosenthal walked two guys and allowed two hits and two more runs. He finished with 45 pitches, 27 of which were strikes.
“He was trying to put a little extra on it when he didn’t need to,” said manager Mike Matheny. “He was talking about how good he feels and sometimes, that first time out, he was anxious and got out there early and threw a lot of pitches in the pen. We tried to hold him back but he was ready to go. He was just putting a little more on it than he needed to do.”
The 22-year-old Rosenthal was impressive out of the Cardinals bullpen a year ago, coming up straight from Double-A to post a 2.78 ERA in 19 games. He was nearly unhittable in the playoffs, allowing just two hits and striking out 15 in 8 2/3 innings.
“As a starter you definitely have to command the zone and that’s something I got away from a little bit in the second inning, just trying to do too much and be too fine,” Rosenthal said. “I have to learn to attack the hitters a little bit better and try and get those first pitch outs and those first pitch swings instead of falling behind in the count."
“It’s been a while since I’ve been able to start so the routine was a little bit different so I have to make some adjustments there and find what works best for me and get comfortable.”