PHOENIX -- Former Arizona right-hander Brandon McCarthy has been exceptional in his first two starts with the New York Yankees, and he told the New York media that he believes a lot of it has to do with greater use of his cut fastball.
After throwing about 20 cutters in a 7-1 victory over Cincinnati last Saturday, he said, "I know it is something I need to be successful."
He cut back on the pitch while with the D-backs this season, intimating the team was against it.
McCarthy used his cutter about 10 percent of the time, according to FanGraphs, while going 3-10 with a 5.01 ERA in 18 starts with Arizona before being sent to the Yankees for left-hander Vidal Nuno on July 6. McCarthy threw his cutter about 35 percent in his previous three seasons with Oakland (2011-12) and the D-backs (2013). He was 5-11 with a 4.53 ERA his first season in Arizona.
The decision to curb his use of the cutter "was something I didn't totally agree with," McCarthy said.
The D-backs did not want to be drawn into the discussion.
"Yeah, well, I wish him well," manager Kirk Gibson said. "People handle things different ways. The way I'll handle it: Let's just say it was all my fault, OK?
"We busted our ass with Brandon. We did the best we could, but maybe sometimes it isn't good enough. We certainly gave him full dedication, and we wish him well. I don't know what his goals are. I know what mine are exactly. Hopefully we'll meet again."
McCarthy said Yankees pitching coach Larry Rothschild approached him about throwing more cutters soon after he was acquired, and the pitcher added that he already had begun working on the pitch in the bullpen. He is 1-0 with a 1.42 ERA in his two starts with the Yankees.
Reliever Heath Bell criticized the D-backs when he was traded to Tampa Bay last winter after going 5-2 with 15 saves and a 4.11 ERA in his only season with Arizona. The Rays released him in May.
"You look at the history of the game at guys that move and change teams. That can happen," Gibson said of pitchers performing better for one team than another. "There are probably guys who move around. ... When Heath Bell left us last year, he had similar comments. Over time, things all shake out."
After giving up 15 homers in 109 2/3 innings with the D-backs, McCarthy has given up one in 12 2/3 innings with the Yankees: Cincinnati outfielder Chris Heisey hit a cut fastball for a home run in the fourth inning Saturday.
STREAK: Lost one
NEXT: Diamondbacks (LHP Wade Miley, 6-6, 4.16 ERA) at Phillies (RHP Kyle Kendrick, 4-10, 4.87 ERA)
--RHP Brad Ziegler was given a day off Wednesday after leaving Tuesday's game in the eighth inning when he was struck in the rib cage by a line drive. He took treatment overnight but was still sore when he got to the park Wednesday. "He's really bruised up," manager Kirk Gibson said. "I was a little worried that he'd be really, really sore. He's obviously sore, but I cross my fingers that it won't be that long." Ziegler leads the major leagues with 52 appearances. The D-backs have a day off Thursday before starting a three-game series in Philadelphia on Friday.
--RHP Trevor Cahill gave up eight hits and seven runs (three earned) on Wednesday, his second start since returning to the rotation at the All-Star break. He had trouble with the Tigers' left-handers, who were 5 of 7 with four runs and three RBIs. "For the most part, I felt pretty good," Cahill said. "I just left some pitches up, and a team like that is going to hurt you." Lefties are hitting .379 against Cahill, who is 1-7 with a 5.72 ERA in 21 appearances (five starts).
--RF Gerardo Parra was 3-for-4 with an RBI double and scored a run Wednesday. He equaled his hit total for the previous five games of the homestand, when he was 3-for-17 with a homer and three RBIs. The homer came Tuesday.
--OF David Peralta set a franchise record with his seventh-inning single, his 41st hit of the season in his 41st game in the major leagues. SS Stephen Drew had the previous record, with 40 hits in his first 41 games.
--CF A.J. Pollock took batting practice Tuesday as he works his way back from a fractured fourth metacarpal in his right hand suffered when he was hit by a pitch on May 31. Pollock will need a rehab assignment after missing so much time, and manager Kirk Gibson said that could start in 7-10 days. Pollock was hitting .316 with six homers and 16 RBIs at the time of the injury, having settled into the leadoff role nicely the previous week.
--RHP Chase Anderson is 6-4 with a 3.58 ERA in 11 starts since his promotion from Double-A Mobile in early May. Including his time at Mobile, Anderson has logged 99 1/3 innings this season, nine short of his career high set in 2010. The D-backs plan to monitor him closely over the final two months. "We've had a lot of discussions, but I don't think we're locked on a number (of innings) right now," manager Kirk Gibson said. "You can sit here and try to predict it, but what is going on is going to predicate what happens. We'll continue to observe him. If we skip him, we may skip him."
QUOTE TO NOTE: "He is pretty impressive to watch. He is somebody everybody has to deal with, for sure. We threw him two changeups and he hit them both very well. That is not the position you want to be in." -- Manager Kirk Gibson on Detroit 1B/3B Miguel Cabrera, who had two hits, including a three-run home run in the eighth inning that opened up the Tigers' 11-5 victory Wednesday.
--RHP Brad Ziegler (sore ribs) left the July 22 game and sat out July 23. "He's really bruised up," manager Kirk Gibson said. "I was a little worried that he'd be really, really sore. He's obviously sore, but I cross my fingers that it won't be that long."
--OF Cody Ross (left calf strain) went on the 15-day disabled list July 22.
--SS Chris Owings (strained left shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 26. An MRI exam July 1 showed no structural damage. He was cleared to begin throwing in early July, but his rehab was shut down for a few days as of July 18.
--C/INF Jordan Pacheco (right shoulder tendinitis) went on the 15-day disabled list June 25. He began a rehab assignment with Triple-A Reno on July 22.
--INF Cliff Pennington (partially torn left thumb ligament) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 2. He underwent surgery June 4. He might be able to resume baseball activity in late July or early August.
--CF A.J. Pollock (broken right hand) went on the 15-day disabled list June 1. He underwent surgery June 2 to repair a fractured fourth metacarpal. He took batting practice July 22 and could start a rehab assignment in 7-10 days, manager Kirk Gibson said July 23.
--3B Eric Chavez (sprained left knee) went on the 15-day disabled list June 9, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 29.
--RHP Bronson Arroyo (complete tear of right ulnar collateral ligament) went on the 15-day disabled list June 16. He underwent season-ending Tommy John surgery July 15.
--RHP Daniel Hudson (Tommy John surgery in June 2013) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 29, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 19. He threw breaking balls in a bullpen session May 13, the first time he has spun the ball since returning to the mound in April. He threw a simulated game June 24. He likely will begin a rehab assignment in August with an eye toward returning to the majors in September.
--LHP Matt Reynolds (Tommy John surgery in September 2013) went on the 15-day disabled list March 19, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 1. He threw his first bullpen session June 10. There is no timetable for his return.
--RHP David Hernandez (Tommy John surgery in April 2014) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 27, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on April 14. He will miss the entire season.
--LHP Patrick Corbin (Tommy John surgery in March 2014) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 19, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on April 4. He will miss the entire season.
LHP Wade Miley
RHP Randall Delgado
RHP Chase Anderson
LHP Vidal Nuno
RHP Trevor Cahill
RHP Addison Reed (closer)
RHP Brad Ziegler
RHP Josh Collmenter
LHP Oliver Perez
RHP Evan Marshall
RHP Matt Stites
LHP Eury De La Rosa
1B Paul Goldschmidt
2B Aaron Hill
SS Nick Ahmed
3B Martin Prado
INF Didi Gregorius
LF Mark Trumbo
CF Ender Inciarte
RF Gerardo Parra
OF Alfredo Marte
OF David Peralta
OF/INF Nick Evans
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