Former Red Sox closer Brandon Workman had a tough night in his debut for the Phillies on Saturday.
One day after getting dealt from Boston to Philadelphia along with Heath Hembree, cash considerations and a player to be named later or cash considerations in exchange for right-handers Nick Pivetta and Connor Seabold, the 32-year-old was dispatched by Phils manager Joe Girardi in the eighth inning of a 4-3 game against the Braves in Atlanta.
With his new team up a run with two outs to record in the eighth, Workman was put on the spot right away, and he immediately served up a two-run double to Matt Adams on his very first pitch, an 80 mph curveball on the outer half of the plate, in a Phillies uniform.
Atlanta went up 5-4 on Adams’ two-run two-base hit, but Workman was at least able to escape the inning without giving up any further damage on a fielder’s choice and four-pitch strikeout of Johan Camargo.
Despite that small bit of success, the Texas native’s fortunes took a turn for the worst in the bottom half of the ninth even after the Phillies offense had knotted things back up at five runs each.
That being the case because after Workman allowed three of the first five Braves he faced in the frame to reach, the bases were full with two outs and nowhere to put Adam Duvall.
Entering Saturday, Workman had never faced the Braves outfielder before in his career, and he initially fell behind in the count at 2-1.
On the fourth pitch of the at-bat, the right-hander could not sneak a 77 mph curveball past Duvall, and the ex-Red laced it to center field for the walk-off single.
As a result of that game-winning base hit, Workman was simultaneously charged with the loss and blown save in his first appearance as a Phillie.
“It’s not the first impression I’m trying to make, obviously,” Workman said during his postgame media availability. “That’s not what I do on the mound. I need to execute pitches better than I did tonight. There’s no excuse for that, I just need to do a better job of getting my job done.”
It just so happens that Workman’s old bullpen mate, Red Sox right-hander Matt Barnes, also took home the loss and blown save in Boston’s 5-4, extra-innings loss to the Orioles on Saturday. I’m sure those two will have a somewhat comical, self-depreciating exchange between one another before night’s end.