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Well, This Is Pretty Neat

From today's piece on Dave Burba by Gregg Bell:

The Mariners aren't simply leaving Burba to idly fill out his crosswords and then prove or disprove his worth. Last month, new pitching coach Rafael Chaves looked at Burba's decades-old mechanics. He noticed Burba was "leaping," in Burba's words, toward home plate when he threw and leaving his arm behind.

So the coach has gotten Burba to put more weight on his back leg to stay more balanced and provide more body momentum to go with Burba's arm motion.

For one thing, it delights me to no end to see pitching mechanics discussed in the daily paper. And I'm not talking about meaingless, stupid mechanical things like Gil Meche "keeping his hands up" - I mean actual, real-life, useful mechanical details. It's so much better than your typical ST fluff. Although I guess you might call this a fluff article on let's go with "fluff with a little substance". I'd much rather read about why a guy's revamped delivery will lead to success than how his inherent determination and veteran grit will help him accomplish the same goal.

For another thing, you already know what I think about pitchers who leave their shoulders back during trunk rotation towards the plate (it's bad), so I'm loving the fact that Chaves spotted this and immediately set to work on fixing it. Not that the team's success this year is going to depend on Dave Burba one way or the other, but it's still nice to hear. Joel Pineiro remains the most egregious offender of the "overrotation" rule, but he's not practicing with the team right now, so there's nothing Chaves can do about that at the moment. I'd love to see the two of them work on straightening things out and making Joel's delivery more fluid, and while that may not happen, at least now there's reason to believe that it might, where there was never that possibility in the Bryan Price days.

Maybe I'm giving Chaves too much credit for what really isn't a big deal, but dammit, I like the guy. We have little reason to believe that he's anything other than one hell of a pitching coach.