Found April 03, 2013 on
Fox Sports Arizona:
By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO
Lance Lynn was a revelation for the St. Louis Cardinals for most of last year, and he feels he's much more prepared in 2013.
He's certainly a lot lighter.
The trimmed-down right-hander looks to begin proving his first full season in the majors wasn't a fluke, as he tries to lead the Cardinals to a second straight victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the finale of this three-game set Wednesday night.
Lynn finished fourth in the NL in wins last season, going 18-7 with a 3.78 ERA while helping St. Louis reach the playoffs via the wild card. Despite being an All-Star, he compiled a 7.31 ERA over a six-start stretch from July 27-Aug. 24 and was demoted to the bullpen for two weeks.
That may have been a big reason why manager Mike Matheny opted to mostly use Lynn as a reliever during the postseason, and he went 1-2 with a 5.73 ERA in six games - two starts.
Lynn is starting 2013 looking to remain in the rotation, and he shed 40 pounds in an effort to do so.
Listed at 240 pounds, Lynn struggled through his first five starts of spring training, going 2-3 while giving up 14 runs in 17 2-3 innings. However, he concluded the preseason schedule by yielding two hits in six shutout innings against Miami on Thursday.
"I thought he got better every single start," Matheny told the team's official website. "He's got a little edge now to him, and a lot of that comes from everybody second-guessing his offseason work habits. Good. I hope he carries it for a long time."
Lynn beat the Diamondbacks on the road in his only start against them May 7, tossing five scoreless innings with seven strikeouts and four walks in a 9-6 victory.
A similar performance should be enough for the Cardinals to take this series after Matt Holliday, Jon Jay and Pete Kozma connected for one homer each in Tuesday's 6-1 victory. St. Louis mustered five hits in a season-opening 6-2 defeat a day earlier.
Holliday, who has driven in three runs in this series, is hitting .326 with five homers and 17 RBIs over his last 22 games at Chase Field.
Brandon McCarthy is slated to take the mound for the Diamondbacks, and that may be seen as an accomplishment on its own after experiencing a major scare with Oakland.
The veteran right-hander was hit in the right side of the head by a line drive off the bat of the Los Angeles Angels' Erick Aybar on Sept. 5, sustaining an epidural hemorrhage, brain contusion and skull fracture. McCarthy underwent a two-hour surgery, and the A's medical staff warned that his situation was "life threatening."
While he's since been cleared to play, McCarthy's health issues stretch beyond that incident. He's battled arm trouble in each of the past six seasons, and a recurring right shoulder strain landed him on the disabled list twice last year.
He finished with an 8-6 record and 3.24 ERA in 18 starts, and Arizona was encouraged enough to sign him to a two-year, 15.5 million free-agent contract over the winter.
McCarthy is facing St. Louis for the first time after he spent his first seven seasons in the AL.
Miguel Montero is 11 for 27 with two homers and six RBIs over his last eight meetings with the Cardinals, and he's 3 for 6 while plating two runs in this series. The catcher had two of Arizona's three hits Tuesday, with one leaving the park.
BEST OF MAXIM
Archie Bradley misses bats. The Arizona Diamondbacks pitching prospect averaged 10.1 strikeouts per nine innings last year in the Midwest League. It wasn’t a fluke. Drafted seventh overall in 2011 out of Broken Arrow [Oklahoma] High School, the now-20-year-old right-hander has the best fastball in the D-Backs’ system — and a plus curveball.
He also misses the strike zone. At...
Guys, this really isn't that hard. If you take your special lady to a ballgame and a ball gets hit at you, just catch it. You'd think this would be common knowledge, but a young man at Tuesday night's Cardinals-Diamondbacks game somehow screwed it up. What happened here is that Pete Kozma hit an absolute blast off of Heath Bell, because only Heath Bell can give up a...
Some time ago, Brandon McCarthy asked a question about first pitches of seasons. McCarthy is neat and fun and smart and good and he recently dropped a FanGraphs reference in an article, so we pay attention to McCarthy, and to his question we issued a response. McCarthy was asking about offspeed frequency with the first pitch of a season. Turns out offspeed pitches are almost never...
PHOENIX You may not be able to tell the Diamondbacks without a program so far this season, but that will change. These D-backs are built for the long haul, and they made the biggest financial moves in franchise history over the offseason to prove it.
Paul Goldschmidts 32 million contract extension announced over the weekend is only the latest in a series of moves that the D-backs...
Two years ago Heath Bell was coming off his 3rd straight 40 save season. Then it all went to ****. He moved this off season to Arizona presumably because he was gritty and had the right make up to play for Kirk Gibson. Well look at what you got Arizona. Bell came in to relieve Tony Sipp and proceeded to:
6 batters, 4 hits, 1 walk, and hey-o 1 K. That’s…not good. ...
Let this be a lesson that all you boyfriends/would-be romeos attempting to take your girlfriend/female friends to a Major League Baseball game, never bail on them!
During Tuesday night's Arizona Diamondbacks/St. Louis Cardinals game, St. Louis Pete Kozma hit a long-distance home run off Heath Bell that ended up landing near the upper-railing of the centerfield table area....
WHAT A CRACKER JACK
The St. Louis Cardinals and Arizona Diamondbacks played the longest game in Chase Field history Wednesday night.At some point during the marathon affair, one fan in particular wanted to make a little history of his own by proposing to his girlfriend.Watch as the guy uses a ring box disguised as a baseball to help pop the big question. She seems to be a little embarrassed by the fact...
Cliff Pennington's single in the 16th inning scored Jason Kubel from second base to give the Arizona Diamondbacks a 10-9 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in a game that started Wednesday night but didn't end until early Thursday.
At 5 hours and 32 minutes, it was the longest home game in Diamondbacks history as far as time elapsed, and tied for the longest at home in...
Cliff Pennington's single in the 16th inning brought home Jason Kubel from second to give the Arizona Diamondbacks a 10-9 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in a game that didn't end until early Thursday.
At 5 hours and 32 minutes, it was the longest home game in Diamondbacks history as far as time elapsed and tied for the longest at home in terms of innings.
PHOENIX (AP) Cliff Pennington's single in the 16th inning brought home Jason Kubel from second to give the Arizona Diamondbacks a 10-9 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in a game that didn't end until early Thursday.
At 5 hours and 32 minutes, it was the longest home game in Diamondbacks history as far as time elapsed and tied for the longest at home in terms of innings...
PHOENIX (AP) -- Cliff Pennington's single in the 16th inning brought home Jason Kubel from second to give the Arizona Diamondbacks a 10-9 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in a game that didn't end until early Thursday. At 5 hours and 32 minutes, it was the longest home game in Diamondbacks history as far as time elapsed and tied for the longest at home in terms of...
When Diamondbacks reliever Heath Bell enters the game against the St. Louis Cardinals, it usually bodes well for the Birds on the Bat. According to FOX Sports Midwest stats guru Tim Trokey (@Tim_Trokey), Bell's 11.17 career ERA against the Cardinals is the highest by any opposing pitcher since 1921 (24 ER in 19.1 IP).
Tuesday night was no different as the Cardinals roughed up...
PHOENIX -- Something about Matt Holliday does not agree with Trevor Cahill.
The two have faced each other nine times, and Holliday has three home runs.
The first two, bases-empty homers in 2010, did not not keep Cahills team, then the A's, from a victory. This one did.
Holliday lined an off-the-plate low changeup into the left field seats for a two-run homer with one out in...