Walters Taking Off

SAVANNAH, GA - Sand Gnats reliever Jeffery Walters has been a dominant force in the bullpen this season. After spending last season in Brooklyn as a starter and beginning this season on the disabled list, Walters has become one of the best relievers in the Sand Gnats bullpen.

"I love it in the bullpen," Walters said. "I like having that pressure on me."

Walters, who has 21 strikeouts and just three walks in 18 1/3 innings so far, spent his offseason trying to increase his flexibility to help him improve his fitness and endurance on the mound.

"I worked a lot on my flexibility," he said. "I did it to help my longevity and to bounce back quicker from outings."

Sand Gnats pitching coach Frank Viola said that Walters made great strides in the offseason.

"Last year he would be throwing great and then he would hit a wall in the fifth inning," Viola said. "Now he's throwing quicker and harder and his confidence is building."

Sand Gnats manager Luis Rojas was also happy with Walters' offseason progress.

"His velocity increased and he came into the season as a leader in the bullpen," Rojas said.

Walters has spent the season focusing on improving every pitch in his arsenal, particularly on his changeup and slider.

"He needs to work on putting more downward action on his changeup," Viola said. "His fastball is between 92 and 93mph and his slider is hit and miss. He just needs more confidence in his changeup."

"His changeup is inconsistent but it's still a good pitch. He just needs to finish it," Rojas said.

"I've really been working on developing my changeup and getting confident with my fastball and slider," Walters added.

Despite the few necessary adjustments, Viola and Rojas are both thrilled with how Walters has performed this season.

"He's done a great job," Rojas said. "He's been getting ahead on the first pitch and having good outings. I really trust him."

"Whatever he's been doing is working," Viola said. "Once he was activated he's really taken off."

Walters has been thriving out of the bullpen and it does not seem like he will be returning to a starting role any time soon.

"He's been staying positive and he has been able to fit into any role," Rojas said. "He's been doing great as a long reliever."

"He's our best relief pitcher," Viola added. "His confidence is building and I think he's really found his niche."

Walters' outstanding performances this season have led to him becoming the leader of the Sand Gnats bullpen and one of Rojas's go-to guys in any situation. He has the ability to throw hard strikes for several innings and he has been nothing short of a hitter's nightmare all season.

Walters' consistency and coolness under pressure have made him one of the most valuable members of the Sand Gnats pitching staff, and the coaches in Savannah have been able to trust him to get the job done in even the toughest spots.

"He's got a bright future," Rojas said. "He's doing a great job and I really trust him."

"He just needs to keep doing what he's doing," Viola said. "He just took off and he hasn't slowed down."


Amazin Clubhouse Top Stories

\r\n \r\n\r\n\"I love it in the bullpen,\" Walters said. \"I like having that pressure on me.\"
\r\n
\r\nWalters, who has 21 strikeouts and just three walks in 18 1/3 innings so far, spent his offseason trying to increase his flexibility to help him improve his fitness and endurance on the mound.
\r\n
\r\n\"I worked a lot on my flexibility,\" he said. \"I did it to help my longevity and to bounce back quicker from outings.\"
\r\n
\r\nSand Gnats pitching coach Frank Viola said that Walters made great strides in the offseason.
\r\n
\r\n\"Last year he would be throwing great and then he would hit a wall in the fifth inning,\" Viola said. \"Now he's throwing quicker and harder and his confidence is building.\"
\r\n
\r\nSand Gnats manager Luis Rojas was also happy with Walters' offseason progress.
\r\n
\r\n\"His velocity increased and he came into the season as a leader in the bullpen,\" Rojas said.
\r\n
\r\nWalters has spent the season focusing on improving every pitch in his arsenal, particularly on his changeup and slider.
\r\n
\r\n\"He needs to work on putting more downward action on his changeup,\" Viola said. \"His fastball is between 92 and 93mph and his slider is hit and miss. He just needs more confidence in his changeup.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"His changeup is inconsistent but it's still a good pitch. He just needs to finish it,\" Rojas said.
\r\n
\r\n\"I've really been working on developing my changeup and getting confident with my fastball and slider,\" Walters added.
\r\n
\r\nDespite the few necessary adjustments, Viola and Rojas are both thrilled with how Walters has performed this season.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's done a great job,\" Rojas said. \"He's been getting ahead on the first pitch and having good outings. I really trust him.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"Whatever he's been doing is working,\" Viola said. \"Once he was activated he's really taken off.\"
\r\n
\r\nWalters has been thriving out of the bullpen and it does not seem like he will be returning to a starting role any time soon.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's been staying positive and he has been able to fit into any role,\" Rojas said. \"He's been doing great as a long reliever.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"He's our best relief pitcher,\" Viola added. \"His confidence is building and I think he's really found his niche.\"
\r\n
\r\nWalters' outstanding performances this season have led to him becoming the leader of the Sand Gnats bullpen and one of Rojas's go-to guys in any situation. He has the ability to throw hard strikes for several innings and he has been nothing short of a hitter's nightmare all season.
\r\n
\r\nWalters' consistency and coolness under pressure have made him one of the most valuable members of the Sand Gnats pitching staff, and the coaches in Savannah have been able to trust him to get the job done in even the toughest spots.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's got a bright future,\" Rojas said. \"He's doing a great job and I really trust him.\"
\r\n
\r\n\"He just needs to keep doing what he's doing,\" Viola said. \"He just took off and he hasn't slowed down.\"
\r\n
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