Jake Peavy thinks he has figured it out

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Jake Peavy 2.jpgHere’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.

Kris Bryant on Joey Votto: “He’s the best player ever … He’s a future Hall of Famer, that’s for sure.”

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The Cubs wrapped up a four-game series against the Reds at Wrigley Field on Thursday afternoon, suffering a 13-10 loss to split the set. They’ll match up again against the Reds next week for a three-game series in Cincinnati. That’s good news for Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant, because that means he’ll get to see Reds first baseman Joey Votto some more.

As CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney reports, Bryant has grown quite fond of Votto. Bryant has already won a World Series ring, a Rookie of the Year Award, and an MVP Award, but he still looks up to Votto. According to Bryant, Votto is “the best player ever.” He added, ““He’s my favorite player. I love watching him. I love talking to him, just picking his brain. He gets a lot of (heat) about his walks and working at-bats and some people want him to swing at more pitches. But, gosh, I mean, he does an unbelievable job. You know that he’s going to give you a great at-bat every time he goes up there. It’s definitely a guy that I look up to and I can learn from.”

Bryant said that Votto is “a future Hall of Famer, that’s for sure.”

Bryant also explained how his approach changed by watching Votto. He said that in his rookie season, he was “swinging at everything.” Votto, however, is “aggressive, but he’s not going to swing at a pitch until he wants it.”

Indeed, in Bryant’s rookie season, he struck out in nearly 31 percent of his 650 plate appearances. This season, he has struck out in only 19 percent of his PA. His walk rate has also increased by more than 2.5 percent since his rookie campaign. Compared to last year, Bryant is down in HR and RBI, but his average is the same, his on-base percentage is markedly better, and his slugging percentage is only down by a minute amount.

Video: Daniel Descalso hits D-Backs’ third inside-the-park homer of the season

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Diamondbacks second baseman Daniel Descalso hit his team’s third inside-the-park home run of the season during Thursday’s 4-0 win over the Astros. In the top of the fourth inning, with the score 1-0 and the bases empty, Descalso ripped a 1-0, 83 MPH change-up to right-center field. The ball caromed off the wall, heading towards left field, which sent center Jake Marisnick on the chase. Marisnick tried to pick up the ball with his glove, but dropped it, which sealed Descalso’s destiny for an inside-the-parker.

It had only been five days since the Diamondbacks’ last inside-the-park home run. David Peralta hit one against the Cubs on August 12. Ketel Marte legged out his club’s first ITPHR on July 26 against the Braves.

As ESPN Stats & Info notes, the Diamondbacks have three as a team, which is amazing because the other 29 teams have hit seven combined.