Davies thinks he can help get Cubs rotation right

  • Cubs starter Zach Davies said despite not having good results early in the season, he feels progress is being made and he's on the right track for improvement.

    Cubs starter Zach Davies said despite not having good results early in the season, he feels progress is being made and he's on the right track for improvement. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 4/22/2021 5:35 PM

For most of last season, the Cubs starting pitchers carried the weight while the team's veteran hitters slumped.

The revamped rotation is off to an underwhelming start in 2021. Heading into Thursday's game against the Mets, Cubs starters had a 5.58 ERA, which ranked 29th in MLB, ahead only of Pittsburgh.

 

Considering Cubs hitters have an MLB-worst .201 batting average, it's almost a miracle the overall record is 8-9.

In his fourth start of the season on Wednesday, Zach Davies allowed 7 baserunners and lasted just 4 innings, but he felt it was a step in the right direction.

"Mechanically, I'm getting to where I want to be," Davies said after the game. "At the beginning of the year, sometimes you try to do too much. Just relaxing and being able to throw in the zone and allow the great defense that's behind me to work, that's what I'm getting toward.

"That's on me. That's something I'm trying to get better at and continue to get better at. It's a long year, especially compared to last year, so little steps. We're getting there. Not where I want to be completely, but improving each time out is a goal. It's easy to pitch when everything's going great. But when you're struggling, that's the time when you've got to really focus and make pitches and adjust throughout the lineup."

Davies joined the Cubs in the Yu Darvish trade over the winter, so this is his third home in three seasons. He was solid in San Diego last year, going 7-4 with a 2.73 ERA in the shortened season.

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He had a couple of rough outings so far with the Cubs. But by allowing 2 runs in 4 innings Wednesday, Davies' ERA dropped to 8.80.

"Being able to throw inside, throw in all quadrants of the zone, that's something I was better at (Wednesday)," Davies said. "Not where I want to be, not all the way there, but being able to move the ball around a lot more and try and open spots for me to throw change-ups, cutters, curveballs. That's kind of where I'm working toward."

Twitter: @McGrawDHBulls

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