Hollands proving to be breakout hurler in 'pen

Hollands proving to be breakout hurler in 'pen

PHILADELPHIA -- Mario Hollands tried not to put too much pressure on himself coming into his rookie season, and the left-hander has proven to be a bright spot in the Phillies bullpen.

"I really had no expectations because it was all new in the beginning, so it was just like riding a bike for the first time," said Hollands, who has worked seven consecutive scoreless outings entering Friday's game against the Mets. "I just live in the moment, day by day, don't look too far ahead."

That mentality has benefited Hollands two months into his Major League career. His debut came in a tough spot, starting the ninth inning of a tie game in Texas on April 1. Hollands faced three batters, walking two and taking the loss. He rebounded with a stretch of six scoreless innings.

"Some nights, you might have a bad outing and you have to forget about it, like my first game," he said. "I haven't thought about it since, unless someone brings it up."

Hollands recorded four outs Thursday against the Mets, including three via strikeouts. He's limiting left-handed batters to a .136 average over 18 innings. The lefty has been even better at Citizens Bank Park, where nine of has 10 appearances have been scoreless and opponents are batting .139.

"I'd much rather see the team do better and win more games than my personal success, but it's been fun so far," Hollands said. "It hasn't been as much of a roller coaster as I thought it was going to be. I mean there's times when it has been, but it hasn't been too bad."

Hollands hasn't been too bad out of the 'pen either, and that's good news for the Phillies.

Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jalaymance.Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.