Manager Torey Lovullo of the Arizona Diamondbacks takes a cause-and-effect approach.
The style and philosophy of manager Torey Lovullo of the Arizona Diamondbacks are beginning to take shape. Games during spring training provided only a slight glimpse into Lovullo’s thinking.
Now that the season has begun, certain patterns are developing. A prominent feature of Lovullo’s approach is the construction of his batting order.
For the opener on Sunday, Lovullo had shortstop Chris Owings hitting in the two-hole against left-hander Madison Bumgarner, and right fielder David Peralta, a left-handed hitter, batting in the sixth position. In game two of the season against right-hander Johnny Cueto, Lovullo moved Peralta to the two-hole, where he batted for most of the spring training contests and dropped Owings down to sixth.
Before Tuesday’s game and the second of the season, Lovullo told Venom Strikes that the placement of Owings/Peralta would be interchangeable between the two/six holes. He advised watching this development as a continuing pattern
"The players are on board with that. I reached out to both (Owings and Peralta), told them of the lineup formation and they understand. This is a strong group who have been together for a while."
Another developing pattern is that Lovullo seems to create a blueprint of transitions. Each move and decision have a cause-and-effect consequence, and each action is designed to produce a calculated effort. Lovullo then explained to Venom Strikes that he seeks a clear level of familiarity.
"Every at-bat is linked and I like continuity. I want to stay with that."
Following-up from Sunday
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The way the Diamondbacks beat the San Francisco Giants in the opener could have a residual effect. While it is conceded that was only one game in the marathon of a baseball season, this was the kind of triumph which the Diamondbacks can lock up in their memory vault.
Shortstop Chris Owings, who delivered the walk-off single in the bottom of the ninth, told Venom Strikes before Tuesday’s game that the effect of the dramatic victory could have a lingering effect.
"What happened was a team effort. After two outs in the ninth, we had four straight hits, but we can certainly build on this. If anything, this team does not quit."
Reliever Jake Barrett, on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation, threw live batting practice on Tuesday. That was after a bullpen session Sunday.
Starter Rubby De La Rosa, recovering from stem cell injection on his right elbow at the end of last season, tossed 15 pitches in the bullpen and another 15 in live batting practice. Overall, Lovullo told Venom Strikes that “everything with each one was very positive.”