9/17/2013 1:31 A.M. ET
Davidson adjusting to sporadic playing time
By Tyler Emerick / MLB.com
PHOENIX -- For the last two seasons in the Minors, D-backs third baseman Matt Davidson timed his swing at the plate with a leg kick that touched the ground just as his hands were beginning to drive toward the ball.
The success he experienced using that technique -- a combined 40 homers and 150 RBIs -- undoubtedly helped the 22-year-old reached the big leagues as fast as he did. But since being added to the D-backs' roster as a September callup, Davidson hasn't received the daily playing time he was accustomed to in the Minors and as a result, his timing suffered.
So after going 2-for-14 with five strikeouts in his first six September games, the youngster met with D-backs hitting coach Don Baylor to iron out a solution to his problem.
"We talked and got rid of my leg kick," Davidson said. "Just since I haven't been playing a lot, the timing was off. There were too many moving parts, so we got rid of it and now I'm getting my leg down sooner."
That's not to say the kick is entirely gone, though. Davidson still lifts his front foot up in his swing, but it's far less profound and more pick it up and put it down.
Davidson described the changes as, "Just stepping in and going for it."
That mindset appears to be paying dividends for him, at least in his first two games since employing the adjustment. Given starts at third on Saturday and Sunday, Davidson went 4-for-7 over the two games with a walk, three runs scored, three extra-base hits and one run driven in.
"You can see what he can do when he gets the bat on the ball," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "He's very strong and he's getting more comfortable."
The highlight of Davidson's weekend, of course, came Sunday when he hit his first Major League homer, a solo shot into the left-field bleachers. Upon returning to the dugout, his teammates gave him the silent treatment for a few moments before congratulating the rookie. Davidson ended up trading an autographed baseball for his milestone home run ball with the fan that caught it.
Armed with some confidence from the last couple games, Davidson is hopeful he can finish the season strong as the D-backs continue to evaluate their young players in advance of the 2014 campaign.
"It's starting to feel like a regular baseball game again, the stadiums aren't too big anymore," Davidson said. "I'm less nervous, just doing my thing."
Reynolds set for Tommy John surgery
PHOENIX -- His plans of avoiding the procedure through rest and rehab having failed, D-backs left-handed relief pitcher Matt Reynolds will undergo Tommy John surgery on Sept. 24 to repair a tear of his ulnar collateral ligament.
Reynolds, who first sustained the injury in June, had been close to making a return to the D-backs' bullpen this month when discomfort in the elbow forced him to abruptly end a simulated game on Thursday.
The 28-year-old then underwent an MRI exam to assess the damage before meeting with team doctors on Monday night and determining that surgery would be necessary.
Reynolds was one of the D-backs' most reliable relievers in 2013, posting a 1.98 ERA in 27 1/3 innings while striking out 23 batters.
Putz rejoins D-backs bullpen
PHOENIX -- Champing at the bit to pitch again this season after a fluke injury forced him to miss more than three weeks, J.J. Putz's frustrating wait ended Monday as the D-backs reinstated the veteran reliever from the disabled list.
"I just missed playing, being out there and competing with the guys, so I was just trying to get back as fast as I could," Putz said. "I'm glad I get a chance to pitch these last games, that's exciting. It's one thing to be in the dugout rooting for these guys, but it's another to be out there contributing."
Sidelined since Aug. 24 with a dislocated right little finger, Putz said the injury feels about 90 percent healed, but it bothers him when he bumps into something.
The 36-year-old also missed two months after sustaining an elbow strain in May. He came back in July and August, posting a 1.08 ERA in those months before injuring his finger while attempting to field a Kevin Frandsen ground ball vs. the Phillies.
D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said Monday he'll use Putz in short-relief situations, with one inning being his max length.
Donate to Phoenix Children's Hospital, get D-backs tix
PHOENIX -- In support of the Phoenix Children's Hospital, the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation is teaming up with FOX Sports Arizona on Tuesday to raise funds through a donation hotline during the broadcast of the D-backs' game against the Dodgers at Chase Field.
Fans who call 602-462-3899 and make at least a $44 donation will receive a limited-edition Paul Goldschmidt keepsake print and two lower-level tickets to a 2013 D-backs home game. The phone lines will open during the pregame show beginning at 6 p.m. MST and remain open until the end of the postgame show.
If fans are unable to attend one of the remaining 2013 games, they will have the option to donate the tickets, and the D-backs will give the unused tickets to patients and families at the hospital to attend a game during the last homestand of the season from Sept. 27-29.
Although only 2,500 Goldschmidt prints are available, donations will be accepted at any time. The keepsake highlights Goldschmidt as a member of the 2013 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. Additionally, 15 fans who give will win Goldschmidt autographed memorabilia while one fan will win a Meet and Greet with the first baseman.
In just the last three years, the FOX Sports Arizona broadcast fundraiser with the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation has generated $281,000 for the community.
• The D-backs' Double-A affiliate, the Mobile Bay Bears, fell one game shy of winning a third consecutive Southern League title on Sunday, losing 4-2 to Birmingham in Game 5 of the series.
• As the D-backs try to get a sustained look at Chris Owings and Didi Gregorius at shortstop this month, Willie Bloomquist got his fourth start of the season in left field on Monday.
"I want him to play, so that's where he is tonight," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "We want to make sure we keep him involved. He has swung the bat well and we're still trying to win games."
Tyler Emerick is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.