During the Wilmington Blue Rocks media day this afternoon, manager Jamie Quirk named Zach Lovvorn the team’s Opening Day’s starter. Opening Night for the Blue Rocks is Thursday against division rival Potomac (weather permitting).
“It’s a huge honor,” Lovvorn said on starting the first game. “I’m extremely blessed and pleased with what the Royals are doing in developing me as a pitcher. Not only me, but all of my teammates. It’s definitely an honor to be named Opening Day and I’m truly blessed.”
Lovvorn started the 2015 season with Low-A Lexington, going 5-6 with a 4.20 ERA In 14 games (13 starts). He struck out 50 and walked 15 in 70.2 innings. Upon his promotion to Wilmington, Lovvorn went 4-5 with a 3.93 ERA in 12 games (11 starts). Over 66.1 innings, he held opponents to a .258 average.
- Have you made any adjustments from last season?
“Being a little more consistent. Last year had its ups and downs. I feel like towards the end, I was a little more consistent. I just want to take this year to go out there, every outing, be the same if not better than the last. Don’t worry about the ups and downs, just consistency.”
- Are there less nerves since you pitched in Wilmington last year?
“Ah yeah. There’s no nerves. It’s my first time being one of those returning guys, so it’s exciting. Just ready to get out there and get the season going.”
- What are your goals for this season?
“I want to go out there, as a team, and bring home a championship to Wilmington.”
- Does being a part of last year’s Blue Rocks playoff team with 11 returning players help?
“We had a little taste of the playoffs. We’ve been there. We’ve kinda got that bad blood with not finishing the deal. Like you said, there’s multiple guys here who are returning, so I think that’ll be good for us.”
Lovvorn made one start in the playoffs, and that came against eventual champion Myrtle Beach in the Championship Series. In the home game, he allowed two runs on eight hits and a walk over 5.2 innings. He struck out six.
Hopefully his goal comes to fruition because it has been a LONG time since the Blue Rocks brought home a championship (and it was shared back in 1999).
You can watch the entire interview below: