Lone Star Dugout Q&A: Glenn Swanson

After a strong start to the season with Single-A Clinton, 24-year-old Glenn Swanson was promoted to High-A Bakersfield. Lone Star Dugout talked to the southpaw on Friday afternoon, one day after he struck out 10 while outdueling first-round pick Max Scherzer.

A draft-and-follow signee of the Rangers one season ago, left-handed pitcher Glenn Swanson has been one of the more impressive pitchers in the organization this season. After an outstanding start with Single-A Clinton, the Rangers promoted the UC Irvine product to High-A Bakersfield, where he has continued to impress.

Swanson out-dueled first round pick Max Scherzer on Thursday night, striking out 10 batters over six scoreless innings. Lone Star Dugout caught up with the hurler on Friday afternoon.

Jason Cole: What are your thoughts on your start last night?

Glenn Swanson: I think more than anything, I was just happy to be back out there again. After a few days and a rough start before, really all you can hope for is to go out and put a quality start together so you can get that confidence back.

Cole: What did you feel was your best pitch last night?

Swanson: I think it was definitely a mix between my breaking ball late in the count and fastballs elevated late in the count.

Cole: Which one, if you had one, did you feel was your weakest?

Swanson: I only threw the changeup a couple of times last night. One of the two times I threw it, it got hit pretty hard. I'd say my changeup was a little bit lacking yesterday.

Cole: Did you get any extra motivation going up against a high-profile guy like Max Scherzer in his debut?

Swanson: No, not really. I try not to look at who is pitching against me. I'm mostly just battling the scoreboard. I didn't really put too much thought into that, but definitely after it's all said and done, it feels good to beat somebody like that.

Cole: Are you happy with the way you've performed with Bakersfield so far?

Swanson: I'm definitely happy. I'm never content and I'm never satisfied, but I'm definitely happy with how my first few starts have gone. I struggled a little bit and walked a few more batters than I would have liked, but overall I'd say I've pitched ok and I've given my team a chance to win every time I went out. I can't complain with that.

Cole: What adjustments have you made between the Single-A Midwest League and the High-A California League?

Swanson: I've really tried to make no adjustments as far as when I made the jump. It's just making day-to-day adjustments on pitches and how I feel. But I didn't really make any adjustments. I just want to keep doing what got me here and that's what I've been trying to do.

Cole: Can you talk about the importance of keeping the ball down in the zone with so many hitter's parks in the California League?

Swanson: I think that's the most important thing that you've got to think about when you make it up to the California League. You have to keep the ball down. There's a lot of big power numbers out here and a lot of smaller fields. There are a lot of wind aided home runs out there. I think that's the biggest thing to keep the run totals down. To give your team a chance to win, the most important thing is probably keeping the ball down and keeping the ball in the ballpark.

Cole: How have you developed as a pitcher in this season alone?

Swanson: I'd say that my preparation has definitely improved. Last year, being more of a reliever, the preparation is a little bit different. I think making the adjustment to a starting pitcher is all in the preparation. It's all about how I prepare for each start and what I learn from other pitchers also prepares me for each game before I pitch against a team.

Cole: Let's talk about your college program for a second. What's it like to see UC Irvine just two wins away from Omaha despite still being a relatively young program?

Swanson: It's a great feeling. I've played with a lot of those guys. A couple of them I haven't, but I got to know them a little bit in the offseason. It is great to see them do big things for that program. They definitely deserve it. We worked hard there and I'm sure this year has been no different. I'm glad to see that it is finally paying off.

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