Matt Garza – Pitching Not His Only Focus – Wrigley Field Mesa Arizona 3/17/11

Posted on 17 March 2011 by Lou

Matt Garza is fine tuning his pitching this spring, but he is also working on making sure that his hitting is up to par as well.  After playing his whole major league career with the Tampa Bay Rays in the American League, he has not had many meaningful at-bats.  Not that he is with the Cus in the National League, he will have 2-3 at-bats a game where he could lend a helping hand in the game’s outcome.  His hard work with Rudy Jaramillo this spring paid off in his most recent start.  With 1st and 2nd and nobody out in his 1st at-bat of the game, Garza laid down a bunt that moved both runners over to 2nd and 3rd and in scoring position with only 1 out for the top of the order.  Even though he bunted the ball towards 1st instead of 3rd, he got the job done.  He did so again in the 4th inning when his sacrifice moved a runner over to 2nd and into scoring position with 2 outs.

On the mound, Garza finally mixed all of his pitches into his game plan in live spring action.  And he was pleased with the results – “Today was more mixing.  I knew I had a live fastball.  I was able to locate it better and I didn’t want to keep using it.  I wanted to mix stuff today… But I used what I had to use, and got the pitches I had to get.  I kept a lot of balls on the ground today and that’s a good sign… At the same time, it complicates things.  When you’re pitching, you want to keep everything simple. Thinking out there too much is a distraction, so you just want to be able to feel what you’re going to do and then attack with it.”

This is a good sign for Cubs fans.  There’s only 2 weeks left until opening day, so we need all of our pitchers at the tops of their games by the time camp breaks…

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