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New D-backs pitcher Luke Weaver expects better season in 2019

St. Louis Cardinals pitching coach Mike Maddux (31) talks with starting pitcher Luke Weaver (7) as catcher Yadier Molina listens during the first inning of a baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds Sunday, Sept. 2, 2018, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Luke Weaver’s 2018 pitching statistics don’t do him justice as one of the main pieces the Arizona Diamondbacks received for trading away franchise cornerstone Paul Goldschmidt.

Weaver finished with a 4.95 ERA in 136.1 innings for the St. Louis Cardinals last season, the worst marks for any Cardinals starter.

A strong 2017 season and another year of MLB experience has Weaver convinced he’ll improve his numbers in his first season as a D-back.

Weaver told Burns and Gambo on 98.7 Arizona’s Sports Station he expects a bounce-back season in 2019, which will be his fourth in the major leagues.

“It wasn’t a great feeling to see numbers like that,” Weaver said. “You want to go out there and be the best you can.

“It was humbling to look at them and know how much there is to gain from it.”

Weaver, 25, said it will take “easy fixes” to get him back to his 2017 form, when he posted a 3.88 ERA in 60.1 innings.

He cited several bad starts as the reason his numbers took a dip in 2018.

Weaver gave up four or more runs in 12 of his 25 starts. His worse start came on June 30 against the Atlanta Braves, when he gave up 10 hits and eight runs in 4.1 innings.

In 2017, Weaver allowed more than four runs in three of 10 starts.

Weaver held a 2.05 ERA before allowing 14 earned runs in his final two starts of that season.

“I just had a couple of games that just blew up on me,” Weaver said. “It was a great season to learn from and build off.”

D-backs fans shouldn’t worry about his health or velocity has reasons for his subpar 2018 season.

He said last season was his best physically.

D-backs general manager Mike Hazen said on Wednesday he’ll need Weaver healthy and effective in 2019 so he can close in on the 200-inning mark Hazen desires.

“Words are words and results are results and I’m going to go out there and execute for my team and just speak through my actions,” Weaver said.

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Burns & Gambo

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