Coach: Chapman struggling due to mechanics

BY foxsports • May 12, 2011

Pitching coach Bryan Price thinks left-hander Aroldis Chapman's struggles are due to mechanics.

"His arm slot gets too low," Price said before the Reds' 4-3  loss to Houston. "He gets across the ball. He's pulling a lot of balls  inside to right-handed hitters."

Chapman, the 100-mph throwing Cuban, walked eight batters over his last three outings and only gotten three outs.

"You get to those places where you're not throwing strikes and  your only focus is to try to throw the ball over," Price said. "Maybe  you aim it a little bit. I think that's where he is right now. There's  noticeable difference between how he was throwing the ball in Milwaukee  -- in what I thought was his most dominant performance -- and where he  was last night in his arm slot. His fingers aren't on top the ball. He's  getting a lot of run and pull.

"I think the first part is a slight mechanical adjustment. The  second part is that when he's out there, he's pitching with his  confidence. When you struggle a while, you start to question yourself a  little bit. I don't know that he's there, but I know it's a typical  response."

Chapman was shut down briefly earlier because shoulder inflammation. Price says Chapman is fine physically.

"It's just a matter of getting back ahead in the count," Price  said. "Get those guys to chase the high fastball or the slider down.  Right now, he's in so many 2-0 and 3-1 counts, he doesn't get a chance  to pitch much. He's just trying to throw the ball over. That's not an  advantageous spot to be in."

Reds manager Dusty Baker said the solution with Chapman will not  involve a stint in the minors, even though Chapman has options.

NOTES, QUOTES

--INF Paul Janish started at third base Wednesday and moved to  shortstop in the seventh inning. It was his first action since spraining  his right ankle on Friday. "It was as good as you could have hoped  for," Janish said.

--RHP Edinson Volquez struggled again with control issues,  walking five in four innings in his start on Wednesday. He's walked 19  in his last 20 1/3 innings. "I don't have my fastball command," Volquez  said. "Sometimes, I feel too strong."

--1B Joey Votto is 5-for-9 with two doubles and a triple in the two games since his first day off the year.

--RHP Mike Leake, pitching in his second relief outing, took the  loss as the Reds fell, 4-3, to Houston. Leake gave up a one-out walk to  J.R. Towles and then a game-winning double to Hunter Pence in the  ninth.

--3B Scott Rolen (shoulder) took batting practice for the third  consecutive day without pain. Rolen could be activated from the disabled  list for Friday's series opener against St. Louis.

BY THE NUMBERS: 24 -- The run Edinson Volquez gave up in the  second inning broke a 24-inning scoreless streak for Reds' starting  pitchers.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "Nine walks is a lot. They say walks will haunt. They haunted us today." -- Reds' manager Dusty Baker.

MEDICAL WATCH:

--SS Paul Janish (sprained right ankle) missed the May 7-10  games and was day-to-day. Janish injured himself sliding into third base  May 6. He hoped to return during the three-game series starting May 9  in Houston. Janish started at third base on May 11 and moved to  shortstop in the seventh inning.

--3B Scott Rolen (sore left shoulder) went on the 15-day  disabled list retroactive to April 21. He said on May 3 that the  shoulder has improved, but he wasn't close to being ready to return. He  was back with the team and began hitting on May 9. Rolen took batting  practice for the third consecutive day without pain on May 11 and hoped  to be activated on May 13.

--INF Juan Francisco (strained left calf) went on the 15-day  disabled list retroactive to April 17. He ran on the field May 3 and was  expected to start a rehab assignment with Class AAA Louisville as the  DH for a few days, starting on May 9.

--RHP Jose Arredondo (Tommy John surgery in February 2010) went  on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 25. He began a rehab  assignment with Class AA Carolina on April 11. He moved from Carolina to  Class AAA Louisville and completed his 30-day rehab assignment on May  10.

--RHP Jared Burton (right shoulder inflammation) went on the  15-day disabled list retroactive to March 29. He suffered a setback in  early April, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on April 18. He  underwent arthroscopic surgery April 22, and the timetable for his  return was unknown.


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