Watching Brad Penny behave like a petulant 3 year old during the recent game against the Diamondbacks, I was struck by how relaxed Brandon Webb was looking in what was an important game in a tight divisional race. Brandon was laughing with infielders and smiling as fly balls got caught at the fence. My first thought was that he gets paid commission every time a headline writer uses the phrase "Webb Gem" (this would make him the richest person on the planet). But it occurred to me that all the D-Backs starters have a pretty relaxed attitude whilst they are on the mound, and after some intensive research (typing "why are Diamondbacks pitchers so relaxed" into Google) I have discovered that it is all down to the recently hired pitching coach who has brought a completely new approach into the clubhouse. I managed to sneak a few words with him about the staff he is now in control of and gained a few insights into the mindset of the man who insists on being called simply "coach".
AVS: Why are you so secretive about your real name.
Coach: It would just bring up lots of issues with "the man".
AVS: Bob Melvin?
Coach: No man, "the man".
AVS: I noticed Brandon Webb looked very relaxed in the recent game against the Dodgers, what’s the secret?
Coach: There’s no secret, Brandon’s a cool guy I just try to keep him cool.
Coach: Well, I can’t go into details but I have a way to keep him cool, if you know what I’m saying.He’s from Kentucky you know,lots of open spaces,sometimes he just stares at the mountains here in Arizona and he seems in a different world.It’s like he’s some kind of shaman.
AVS: People often say that Livan Hernandez "pitches backwards" is that you’re idea?
Coach: Absolutely, one night I was just staring up at the sky and I thought "What if I’m not really here? What if I’m a time traveler, traveling back to my own birth? What if a pitcher pitched backwards? These desert skies can be amazing for just giving you crazy concepts.It’s like I’m some kind of shaman.
AVS: What’s your relationship like with Doug Davis?
Coach: (laughs) Doug is one wild and crazy guy. I have a very good business relationship with Doug.
Coach: That’s what we call it. Doug will call me and say "you wanna do some business" and I’m like "sure Doug let’s do business". I love the way he pitches real slow and just gets caught in the moment,it’s like he’s some kind of shaman.
AVS: Byung-Hyun Kim has joined the team.How do you think he will fit in?
Coach: He’s gonna bring some heavy Korean stuff to the team,I mean really heavy Korean stuff.
AVS: What do you say to pitchers when you go the mound?
Coach: I just say "Chill out,you’ve got the special stuff so use it.Last time I went to the mound to talk to Micah Owings, me and him just got a fit of the giggles for about 5 minutes, in the end the umpire ejected me from the game, but all umpires are fascists,have you noticed how "umpire" and "empire" are almost identical words? It’s like they’re trying to rule us.My friend Dave says that umpires are actually lizard people who are trying to take over the world.Dave is a wild guy.It’s like he’s some kind of shaman.
AVS: Thank you Coach.
This blogs team of lawyers would like me to point out that the above is in no way intended to imply that any Arizona players indulge in any illegal or immoral practices of any kind.