CHICAGO -- Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta and Reds pitcher Homer Bailey live about one hour from each other near Austin, Texas. The two 28-year-old pitchers have known each other since high school, and train together in the offseason. On Tuesday, Arrieta got the best of the Reds' starter in the Cubs' 7-3 win.
"For past five, six years we've been training partners, and we throw together -- 8 a.m., every morning," Arrieta said. "What impresses me so much about Homer is his work ethic. Bright and early every morning in the offseason, throwing, running, working out, taking care of his body -- he's a true professional.
"He does things the right way and really takes pride in keeping himself healthy and performing at a high level. I look forward to competing against him for a long time to come. It's fun to compete against guys you know well and train with. It's a fun situation to be a part of."
The two are friends off the field, competitors on it.
"Before the game, we kind of tip our caps to each other and acknowledge each other," Arrieta said. "When the game is underway, it's all business at that point."
The two offer each other tips during their workouts.
"We give each other little tidbits of advice," Arrieta said. "When the offseason rolls around, we fight for each other and try to make each other a little better."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less