8/17/2014 12:51 P.M. ET
Communication key for Harkey with influx of rookies
By Steve Gilbert / MLB.com
MIAMI -- D-backs pitching coach Mike Harkey has had to familiarize himself with a lot of new faces this year.
Entering Sunday, the D-backs have had 11 players make their big league debuts this year, including seven pitchers.
"We've been doing a lot of coaching this year," Harkey said. "It's pretty rare to have that many rookies."
Arizona manager Kirk Gibson praised the job Harkey has done in getting so many rookies up to speed, crediting the first-year pitching coach's communication skills.
One of the keys is not overwhelming them with too many mechanical changes or information right off the bat.
Harkey takes some time to watch each pitcher in their first few outings before deciding what tweaks might need to be made. He also has a resource in bullpen coach Mel Stottlemyre Jr., who had previously been the organization's pitching coordinator, so he had seen most of these pitchers in the Minors.
"I'm very fortunate to have Mel here, because he knows almost every kid that we've brought up," Harkey said. "So I've had someone to bounce things off of. He gives me a heads-up on certain tendencies and things to look for and that helps out a lot. Then we come up with a plan to get them where we think they need to be."
As pitchers learn Peralta, rookie learning to adjust
MIAMI -- In the back-and-forth game between hitters and pitchers, it's David Peralta's move.
The D-backs' rookie outfielder who got off to a hot start after being called up at the beginning of June, entered Sunday's action in a 2-for-27 slump, as opposing pitchers have made adjustments in the way they've worked him.
"They are making better pitches," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "They're pounding him inside, throwing a lot of offspeed pitches."
The onus now is on Peralta to adapt and to be a little less aggressive at the plate if he's getting more offspeed pitches.
"You have to make adjustments," Peralta said. "They're making adjustments to me, so I just need to be a little more patient, which I'm trying to do now and adjust myself."
One of the things that has helped Peralta during the slump is the fact that Gibson continues to put him in the lineup on a daily basis. With Gibson showing confidence in him, it's easier for Peralta to have confidence in himself.
"It's going to happen, because everyone goes through it," Peralta said. "You just have to keep working and keep doing your program. You just need to keep positive. For me, it's like a test to see if I can handle that. I'm just trying to be positive every day and play my game."
Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.