Williams: Fister needs to sink the ball; updates LaRoche’s recovery

Wednesday’s starter Doug Fister would like nothing more than to put aside his season debut from last Friday in an 8-0 loss at Oakland.

Manager Matt Williams believes Fister will have a better showing in today’s start against Arizona.

“I think he just needs to be down in the strike zone,” Williams said. “I anticipate that today being on normal rest. We pushed him through an inning the last time out just to make sure his pitch count stayed up there and all of that worked the way we wanted it to work. The key for him is sinking the ball down. Use his curveball certainly. But I think it will be much better today than it was last time out.”

Williams said Fister can draw on games from the past when things did not go well and how he was able to get through those situations. Similar to Diamondbacks starter Bronson Arroyo who finished off his 16th career complete game on Tuesday night, despite giving up early hits and a run to the Nationals. Williams believes Fister can do the same thing to forget last Friday.

“He has had experience certainly,” Williams said. “I am sure he has had games where he didn’t throw the way he wanted to throw before. So he knows what to do. For him it is location and movement. That is the key for him. It wouldn’t be any different for him today than it would be any other day. If he does that we see a lot of grounders, a lot of early swings, low pitch counts, that is what we hope for.

“We talk about sinker ballers, the more they throw in the bullpen prior to a start, the better they are, generally. When they get tired, the ball tends to sink a little bit more. They don’t rely on velocity and really not on location as much as movement. So, I think on normal rest he will be much better today. He will have a little more movement, just have to get the ball down, make sure it is down.”

Williams had an update on the status of Adam LaRoche, who is on the disabled list with a quad injury.

“He is just (in the) healing process right now,” Williams said. “He is not going to do anything for about four or five days. We will get back into some activity and monitor some activity moving forward. I don’t think it is going to be any more than a couple of weeks.

“By the end of the weekend he should be starting his activity again.”

Williams said they were relieved the MRI did not show extensive damage to LaRoche’s quad, so he likely will not need rehab games before he can return.

“The results of the MRI are such that it is not a really bad strain, so it should heal fairly quickly,” Williams said. “The key is not to push him too fast too early in the rehab within the 15-day process to make sure he is ready to go. He should be fine.

“The good thing about it is he can still hit. Hitting doesn’t bother (it). It’s the running part of it. He can keep sharp and fresh. Even some monitored ground balls probably will be a part of the protocol during the 15 days. It is not like he has to sit out for a month and do nothing. It is not like (Ryan) Zimmerman where he cant do anything baseball wise. So he can keep sharp. So I don’t know if those will be needed. We will see as he gets closer to it.”

* Ross Ohlendorf pitched 2 1/3 innings for high Single-A Potomac in a rehab start at Frederick today. He allowed 11 hits, seven runs, one homer, no walks and struck out two with 59 pitches, 39 for strikes. Ohlendorf has been on the 60-day disabled list with a right lumbar strain.

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