PHILADELPHIA -- Jake Diekman didn't need to watch the tape to know what he was doing wrong in Thursday's outing against the Cubs.
The Phillies rookie reliever knew his alignment toward home plate was off, but for whatever reason, he couldn't fix it on the fly.
Once he did cure the problem in the days after, the results were evident. In the eighth inning of Sunday's 5-1 loss to Boston, Diekman needed just 11 pitches to strike out the side. The strong performance came just three days after he allowed four runs in two-thirds of an inning in Chicago, making a five-run game come down to the wire.
Diekman then struck out four batters in 1 2/3 innings Tuesday in a 5-2 loss to the Nationals.
"I was just throwing way too far across my body where my arm was dragging, and I just couldn't throw it inside," Diekman said. "I was closing myself off too much and just leaving it right down the middle or way, way outside."
Diekman has appeared in four games since his promotion from Triple-A Lehigh Valley. In three games, he's pitched great. The other, not so much. The lefty is 1-0 (he got his first career win in his debut on May 15), but the poor outing caused his ERA to balloon. It now sits at 7.71.
"I learned from it," Diekman said. "I had to otherwise [or] I wouldn't be up here very long. So it made me refocus and really figure out what I was doing wrong and try to fix it."