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Cardinals adapt to Braves rookie's odd delivery

ATLANTA -- The topic of Atlanta Braves reliever John Gant's unique delivery came up in the St. Louis Cardinals’ pre-series hitters meeting on Friday. The Cardinals’ concern was that Gant, who begins his windup with a series of aborted leg kicks before finally lifting his leg and delivering the ball, might try to quick-pitch them.

“I believe the consensus was he either doesn’t do that or can’t do it by rule,” infielder Greg Garcia said.

The weird delivery, video of which has gone viral on the Web, didn’t seem to fool the Cardinals. Garcia and Stephen Piscotty both hit home runs off Gant, a rookie right-hander who does not do the series of leg kicks when pitching with runners on.

Cardinals reliever Seung Hwan Oh does a little stutter step before his delivery. Cardinals manager Mike Matheny mentioned Jordan Walden and ex-San Francisco Giants reliever Robb Nen for their unusual deliveries.

“I think guys find their own rhythm and try to mess with timing, because that’s what pitching is, trying to take hitters out of their timing,” Matheny said. “Guys try to quick-pitch, all those little things. Once you see it a time or two, you appreciate it.”