Showing chops for comedy as well as pitching, Darvish confirms that Pierzynski's bad-boy reputation even translated easily into Japanese.
“I heard a lot about A.J. And, from what I heard, he didn't have a very good reputation,” Darvish cracked Wednesday night through his translator.
This was about the time the Rangers signed the 16-year major leaguer to a one-year, $7.5 million deal last winter after the White Sox decided to part ways with him.
Now, after getting to know him this spring and working with him through the season's first few weeks, Darvish has learned the same thing about Pierzynski that probably your parents told you about others: Whatever you hear about a person, it is always best to get to know him or her and then make your own judgments.
Pierzynski has been behind the plate in four of Darvish's five starts this season, and the results have produced an 0.97 ERA and 43 strikeouts (against six walks) over 27 2/3 innings.
In Darvish's lone start with Geovany Soto behind the plate, he surrendered three earned runs and six hits in five innings. Though, to be fair to Soto, that was the one start in which Darvish wasn't particularly sharp: He walked four Angels that day (April 7) while battling a blister on his finger.
“In my mind, now that I've gotten a chance to work with him, he's a very good person, a very good catcher and a very mature player,” Darvish says. “He treats me like an adult, but almost like a parent would treat an adult child.
“It's a very good thing.”