Beam making bid for more innings
Pirates reliever pitches four scoreless frames on Saturday
PITTSBURGH -- Pirates right-handed reliever T.J. Beam is making an active bid for more action out of the bullpen after a strong showing in Saturday night's 9-6 loss to San Diego.
Beam threw 31 pitches in a four-inning relief stint, and allowed no runs and one hit. This followed a strong performance in Colorado on July 19, when he tossed 3 1/3 scoreless innings.
"I'm starting to build confidence and having an outing like that is good for a young pitcher like me to really build confidence," Beam said. "To know that I can pitch here and I belong here."
Beam has caught the attention of Pirates manager John Russell.
"Beam has done great," Russell said. "He really, really saved us on Saturday night and the great thing about him is he was very efficient -- four innings and less than 40 pitches -- that's tough to do. We sent him out for that short period and told him to be more consistent with his angle down in the zone and not overthrow. He gives us again a very versatile pitcher down there -- we can use him long, we can use him for an inning, we can use him for two innings -- he gives us a lot of different options and we feel confident that when we bring him in the game, he's going to give a good effort."
With the recent trade of Damaso Marte to the Yankees, Beam sees an opportunity and hopes to seize it.
"When you lose a top pitcher like Marte, things are shaken up in the bullpen and you really put yourself in an opportunity to win a spot in the bullpen," Beam said. "The other side is you really want to show that the confidence of the coaching staff and the management is warranted. That, 'Hey, this kid can really pitch and he can help us out.'"
George Von Benko is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.