Francisco regains stride after rough start

Francisco regains stride after rough start

SEATTLE -- Rangers manager Ron Washington was hoping to stay away from using Frank Francisco on Sunday. Francisco had appeared in six of the Rangers' last nine games, including the first two games in Seattle. His 12 appearances are the most on the team and tied for ninth in the American League.

Francisco had a win on Friday and a save on Saturday, and it has become obvious that he has regained Washington's trust as far as pitching in close situations. He has allowed just one run in his last nine innings.

"In the beginning of the season, I don't think I was ready," Francisco said. "Even when I started doing better, I don't think everything was better. But I kept working to find my rhythm, and now I'm hitting my spots better."

Looking at some video helped. Francisco studied tape from the past few years and found that his mechanics were out of whack. His back leg was "collapsing," and he was getting "under" his pitches. Basically now he's keeping the back leg firm, which allows him to drive "downhill" off the mound with more velocity and better location.