May 24, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks relief pitcher Addison Reed (43) throws during the eighth inning against the Chicago Cubs at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Last week, my colleague Charles Rahrig V began a post with the following line:
"It feels like it’s the closer’s role that is cursed and not specific pitchers for the Arizona Diamondbacks."
I’d like to say, Charles, that it might be me because ever since I started writing for venomstrikes before the 2012 season, it seems as though the position has been more like a game of Hot Potato. Well, one former closer could be ready to assume his old position based on recent performance.
According to Nick Piecoro at azcentral, Addison Reed’s outings since being forced out as the stopper in mid-May have earned him the right to earn some save opportunities. With 1 2/3 scoreless innings in yesterday’s marathon loss, Reed has lowered his ERA to 5.00 from the 7.20 mark upon his demotion. Other than a 1/3 inning, two-run stint on May 22nd, he has not allowed any runs in 7 2/3 innings, allowing three hits and three walks with six strikeouts. According to Piecoro, Reed has made two adjustments:
"He has tempered down his leg kick in his delivery and adjusted where he sets up on the pitching rubber, shifting from the third-base side over to the first-base side."
Manager Chip Hale would like to have the role defined at some point this season:
"“I do believe, in the end, if you look at all the teams that win and are in first place, you can pretty much tell who’s going to pitch the ninth, who’s going to pitch the eighth, who’s going to pitch the seventh,” Hale said. “I think eventually we need to settle that down and figure that out.”"
With a seven game homestand set to begin tonight, I’ll bet Reed gets the first save opportunity. If he can convert, the question will disappear for the time being. If he can’t, then perhaps Pedro Cerrano from “Major League” can show up with Jobu and end the curse once and for all.