Jesús Luzardo was demoted to Triple-A Las Vegas on Sunday after struggling with some tough outings this season.
It was something the 23-year-old saw coming, however.
“He knew it was going to happen before he went,” Athletics manager Bob Melvin said on Wednesday. “I was checking in with him basically after every outing so he wasn’t surprised by it.”
This season, Luzardo went 2-4 with a 6.87 ERA in 13 appearances, six of them starts.
Luzardo in two Triple-A starts, boasts a 1.93 ERA in 4 ⅔ innings.
Melvin said so far, Luzardo is doing well despite the demotion.
“I actually talked to him right after the game,” Melvin said. “He felt good about it.”
Luzardo wasn’t happy with a couple of walks he had, but Melvin said the time in Triple-A could help with his confidence and work on his breaking ball.
“We’re going to need him because our best team has Jesús Luzardo in it whether it’s in a starting role or in relief,” Melvin said.
Luzardo, once a highly-touted prospect, has come a long way since his 2019 rookie season where, in 12 innings of relief, he struck out 16.
It’s been a rollercoaster ever since with some tough starts mixed in. He’s said before he was struggling with pitch location and had more of a setback when he fractured his pinky on his throwing hand while playing video games. It was a “stupid” decision, as he explained, but it appeared that wasn’t the determining factor as to why he was sent down.
This could be the reset he needs to build that confidence Melvin referred to, and his role will be determined after that as well.