Sean Cunningham, head trainer for the Florida Marlins, is without a doubt doing his level best at getting bullpen pitchers ready to face the task at hand. But there is avenue he probably hasn't considered.
A good pitching staff needs a secret weapon: a great trainer. "He's the extra man in the rotation," said Bamberger.
"He's got to be a doctor and a counselor and, to tell the truth, an all-around medicine man who's slinging bull and pumping guys up."
"A few years years ago we had a starter who was raving about this special stuff that the trainer was rubbing into his shoulder before he pitched. He said the stuff kind of fizzed and stung when he put it on, and then it got all warm and sticky. Said it was helping him a lot."
"So I asked, 'What are using on him? Maybe the other pitchers ought to try it.'
"The trainer told me, 'This guy kept asking if had something new or special. So I figured he thought he needed something. I looked around to see what I had. I rubbed the only thing on him that I could find: Coca-Cola.' "
Thomas Boswell, Why Times Begins on Opening Day, p. 127.
Hey, it might work.