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Balfour pleased, will pitch again Thursday night



    Rays closer Grant Balfour was pleased with how he felt and how he threw in a 12-pitch 1-2-3 inning in a minor-league game on Wednesday, clocking at 90-91 mph.
     But his performance Thursday night against the Twins - in his first back to back outings of the spring - will be more telling.
   "There will be a little more intensity and you're bouncing back with no rest,'' Balfour said. "That's always a good test, see how you're feeling and stuff.''
    Balfour, who complained of a dead arm period about a week ago, said he's okay with his current velocity - "It's fine; it is what it is right now" - but expects an increase of at least a few miles an hour once the regular season starts due to the adrenaline and emotion he pitches with.
  "I'm not worried about it,'' he said. "I've done it plenty of times to where I know my body, I know what it does. I'm fine with it.''
  Working the first inning of a game on the back fields in Port Charlotte against Twins AA hitters, and on a mound he said he felt wet and soft, did not help.
   "Nothing against being out here, but it is tough to get the adrenaline going,'' he said. "With all the emotion it'll kick into gear in another 10 days and I'll be right around (92-94 mph).''

[Last modified: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 3:31pm]


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