Here’s Jake Peavy not making sense when talking about people criticizing his early season performance:
”I didn’t hear all these critics talking last year, when I did what I
did after about the same amount of starts that I’ve made this year. [When I was] 3-0 with a low ERA, nobody was talking then.”
There’s a reason for that, Jake: you were 3-0 with a low ERA. Now you are not. I know that seems unfair and everything, but that’s kind of how criticism works.
But maybe it stops now, because Peavy thinks he has figured out the source of his troubles. And unlike the stuff about the criticism, this does make a whole lot of sense:
”If you go look at my delivery at the start of last year to what it was
before my last start, it doesn’t look like the same guy. A big part of that is my legs. For some reason, I quit using my legs.
It’s pretty easy to think why.”
The reason is that his big injury last year was an ankle injury, and Peavy thinks that he’s been unconsciously favoring his lower body since coming back, thereby screwing up his overall mechanics.
Like I said, that makes sense. If you read a lot about pitching and pitching mechanics, it’s amazing how little you hear about guys’ arms and how much you hear about legs. Sure, arm angles get token mentions, but it’s all about the base. The foundation, the kick, the push-off, the stride, the plant and the landing.
Peavy goes tonight against Rich Harden and the Rangers, so we’ll see if the diagnosis has been followed by a cure.
Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant was one of the most prominent examples of service time manipulation in recent memory. He was ranked as the No. 1 prospect in baseball going into the 2015 season by Baseball America. He then had an incredible spring, batting .425 with a spring-high nine home runs and 15 RBI. The Cubs, however, didn’t add him to the Opening Day roster, instead keeping him in Triple-A for the first two weeks of the season, ensuring the club would get another year of control over Bryant because he wouldn’t accrue enough service time. He made his debut on April 17 and the rest was history. Bryant won the 2015 NL Rookie of the Year Award.
While the MLB Players Association filed a grievance on his behalf, Bryant didn’t say anything. But it was a learning moment for him. The same is true of the past offseason, which Bryant says “opened my eyes,” as Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. He now considers labor issues a priority, saying, “I need to study up, have my voice heard, continue to learn, because this is going to affect us for years to come. And I’d be foolish not to kind of offer myself out there.”
As Wittenmyer notes, Bryant hopes to replace Jake Arrieta as the Cubs’ player reprensentative. The players make that decision later this month. Bryant also vowed to fight for the next collective bargaining agreement. He said, “Maybe the focus was on other things rather than some of the more important things. But I think with this next one things are definitely going to change, and there’ll definitely be more fight on our side just because we’re going to get the chance to experience the effects of some of the things we agreed to. The only way to get what you want here is to fight for it. And I think you’re going to see a lot of that.”
It’s good to see Bryant motivated by recent economic developments in baseball. Hopefully more players take his lead and become more informed, arming themselves with all of the tools they need to create a better situation for themselves when the current CBA expires.