Diamondbacks right-hander Archie Bradley wasn’t happy about what happened during his outing on Tuesday, but he was trying hard on Wednesday morning to keep the big picture in mind and to focus on the positives.
“Numbers-wise, it wasn’t great,” said Bradley, who gave up six runs in 1 1/3 innings against the Oakland Athletics. “I was still able to work on and execute some of the things I wanted to work on.”
Bradley is trying to walk a sort of tightrope this spring. He’s fighting for a spot in the Diamondbacks’ rotation. At the same time, he’s trying to refine his pitches – and even add a new one – to his repertoire.
To that end, he was pleased with how he felt with his change-up, a pitch he has been working to improve for years. He said he threw three or four of them for strikes and got a ground ball on another on Tuesday.
And he was encouraged by the development of his cutter – a pitch he threw briefly three years ago and has dusted off this spring. He said three of the six hits he allowed on Tuesday came on broken-bat cutters.
Bradley broke out a cutter during his time in the Arizona Fall League in 2014, and scouts at the time believed the pitch showed promise. But he showed up the next spring and stopped throwing it. Asked why he ditched it, he didn’t have a good reason.
“I don’t really know, to be honest,” he said. “I just kind of didn’t throw it. … (Recently) I look at guys who throw it, the cutter/slider, working off their curveball, and I was just like, ‘Man, why am I not throwing this?’ I talked to Butch (pitching coach Mike Butcher) about it and (manager) Torey (Lovullo) and they were like, yeah, let’s do it. I think it’s going to be really helpful for me.”
Bradley said he missed spots, got himself into bad counts and put himself in trouble on Tuesday. He couldn’t stop the bleeding during his second inning. Many things about the outing did not go the way he wanted. But he said he’s trying not to be so focused on results.
“I felt good. I think that’s the biggest thing right now,” he said. “I feel like my pitches were working well, but I just missed some spots.
“But I’m trying to keep the overall picture of it’s spring training, I’m working on new pitches, throwing stuff I haven’t thrown in the past. I’m trying to stay positive and keep the big picture in mind.”
Reach Piecoro at (602) 444-8680 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @nickpiecoro.