Credits better slider Widener said he's been able to throw his slider for strikes this spring, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports.
Impact On Sunday, Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo named Widener as the fill-in rotation member for the injured Zac Gallen (forearm), and he will pitch the fourth game of the season, April 4, in San Diego. The right-hander credits the behavior of his slider, which opponents were able to lay off in 2020 knowing it would usually end up below the zone. "It really gave me some confidence to be able to pitch again," Widener said. "At this level, you can't overpower everybody. You have to pitch. It makes a huge difference for me." Widener pitched as a reliever in 2020, posting a 4.50 ERA with 22 strikeouts in 20 innings, but issued an eyebrow-raising 5.4 BB/9. During Cactus League play, Widener struck out 12 and walked one over nine innings.
MARCH 29 • ROTOWIRE