Less than 24 hours after making a 1 2/3-inning start, R.A. Dickey remained in the Seattle Mariners rotation – and was a volunteer in their bullpen.
"I'm available tonight," Dickey said before Saturday's game. "You pitch as poorly as I did (Friday), you want to get back out there as soon as possible."
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The sentiment is understandable, but is it practical. Apparently, it is.
"I've brought starting pitchers back the day after a short start – against the same team – and inevitably they've pitched better that second day," pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre said. "With a knuckle ball pitcher, it's probably not a stretch to pitch them between starts.
"That pitch isn't as hard on the arm as some others."
Stottlemyre said Dickey could pitch in consecutive days, and on the second and third day between starts.
"The fourth day, you'd have to say 'No,' so you wouldn't disrupt his scheduled start," he said.
Dickey said one of the values of his knuckle ball is that it allows him the versatility to pitch often in most any role.
"I could give us three, four innings and come back the next night," Dickey said.
Manager John McLaren laughed when asked if Dickey was available Saturday.
"If you ask him, he's always available," McLaren said. "He's always ready to pitch."