Nice article at ESPN about Johnny Cueto:

I thought this was very interesting:

A study by Dr. Glenn Flesig — the head researcher for the American Sports Medicine Institute, home of noted athletic orthopedist Dr. James Andrews — determined that a pitcher’s size does not dictate fatigue.

“There was no difference between the short and tall groups regarding how much load there was on the elbow related to Tommy John injury risk nor on the shoulder related to rotator cuff risk,” wrote Fleisig in an e-mail. “The load stretching the front of the shoulder [related to front shoulder capsule injury risk] was actually less in the shorter group than taller group. Thus, the data does not support the theory that shorter pitchers produce greater loads [and injury risk] on their arms.”

You hear so much about the smaller guys hurting themselves by overthrowing, etc.

But THIS is what I love seeing:

More than likely, Cueto did not arrive in spring training camp in adequate shape, despite having pitched so much during the winter. These days, Cueto is not the spindly pitcher the Reds signed in 2004. Instead, he carries a slight paunch — the spoils of success.

It’s almost impossible to relate how difficult it is for a person who comes from a poor country to handle excess when it’s presented to them. But Cueto is making an effort to get in better shape.

Shortly after throwing a bullpen session this week, Cueto spent time with Reds trainers working out with a medicine ball. After they finished the exercise, Cueto ran up and down a hill near the playing fields.

“I see him working a little extra this year,” said former Reds pitcher Mario Soto, a roving instruction during the spring.

Part of that extra work includes the pantomiming with Price.

“We’re just trying to add some discipline, maintain a delivery and thought process throughout the course of an outing,” Price said. “What we want is a consistency and reliability to his pitches. The more effort he expends the more energy that he needs, and it will affect him throughout the course of a season. Sometimes he works too hard to throw hard.”

I really like that he’s working hard to get in better shape and I like what I’m hearing (not just on Cueto) from Price. Hopefully this is the year that Cueto has a full great good would that be?

(Thanks to reader clarkwgriswold for pointing it out.)