The Cincinnati Fighting Dustybakers are in dead last in the NL Central while their pitching staff has the third worst ERA in the league despite trailing only the Cubs in overall strikeouts.
Why is the roster of young pitchers like Homer "Homer" Bailey and cagey veterans like Bronson Arroyo so piss-poor? Is it bad defense behind them? Are they tipping their pitches with runners on base? Not enough clutchiness? Wrong, says manager Dusty Baker. The pitchers just aren't running enough.
"There's no substitute for running," he says. "I tell little kids to run. How many little kids do you see running?" He's instilled that running spirit in his son, 8-year-old Brandon. Baker does so because he believes it has value. He believes in it because he ran in his boyhood. "We used to run just to take off running," Baker said. "First thing your momma hollered, 'Quit running -- quit running through the house.' That kid that runs is going to be somebody."
What does running like a fool have to do with pitching well? Not really sure, but Baker says that "strong legs lead to strong arms". And none of that fruitcake treadmill or StairMaster bullshit, Dusty wants players to run on God's Green Earth. That'll make 'em throw no-hitters and winning Cy Youngs and they'll be all strong and healthy!
Guess Isaac Hayes didn't run much.
(via the ol' BBTF Primer)