Francisco Liriano throws 36 pitches in first spring outing
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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- His performance won't be mistaken for a Picasso, but Minnesota Twins stud left-hander Francisco Liriano took the mound for the first time this spring.
Pitching in an early-morning 'B' game, Liriano threw 36 pitches over two innings -- mostly fastballs and changeups -- but he struggled mightily with command.
Over those two innings, Liriano allowed three hits, two walks and a hit batter while striking out one. Liriano also induced a 6-4-3 double play and a flyout. At the end of the second inning, the Rays ran themselves into two outs on bases to help bail Liriano out of a jam.
Catcher Drew Butera had to trot out to the mound in the first inning to help settle Liriano's erratic control, and pitching coach Rick Anderson made a visit in the second inning.
While the result certainly wasn't favorable -- if that even matters in a spring-training 'B' game -- the fact that Liriano was able to take the mound after a bout with shoulder tendinitis in late February is a good sign. The lefty appears to be back on schedule.