Herrmann upbeat despite spring results

Herrmann upbeat despite spring results

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Frank Herrmann's brief road to recovery this spring has so far been a rocky one.

The Indians reliever, coming back from Tommy John surgery, made his first two Cactus League appearances this week in Goodyear, and neither went particularly well. In two games (he didn't make it out of his one scheduled inning Saturday), Herrmann has given up six earned runs on eight hits, including three homers, while striking out one in 1 2/3 innings.

But the right-hander says he's not discouraged, and manager Terry Francona says he shouldn't be.

"If he went out and pitched a 1-2-3 inning, it might change the rest of his day where he's a little more upbeat, but other than that, he needs innings, he needs consistent innings," Francona said. "Because there's a little period there where you're still trying to make sure you feel good and then once you get fully confident, then you're fully competing. And that'll come."

Herrmann was tasked with opening Saturday's game against a D-backs team that will start the season in Australia well ahead of the rest of baseball. Thus, its lineup was full of starters who were more ramped up and ready for Opening Day.

"I've been on the training staff to get me into games for a while," Herrmann said. "I told them, 'I don't care if I get my butt kicked. I want to get out there and get my feet wet.' It's Spring Training. It's the perfect time to do that. I think there was value in [facing a full lineup of Major Leaguers], and also a litmus test a little bit to let me know where I'm at and what adjustments I need to implement."

Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. Tyler Emerick is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.