Doesn't sound like anything to worry about...
John Lott, National Post
Published: Friday, March 30, 2007
DUNEDIN, Fla. - B.J. Ryan wasn't exactly fretful, but he admitted he carried a little apprehension into his first game in more than two weeks.
When it was over, the Blue Jays all-star closer was joking with pitching coach Brad Arnsberg in the bullpen. He was also confident that his back problem is history.
"I kind of didn't know what it was going to be like," Ryan said after a pitching a perfect inning in a Double-A game yesterday. "I hoped it would turn out to be good. I felt comfortable out there and I felt like I stayed in control. I didn't really jump out and miss very bad. It was a good day."
He induced a ground ball, a strikeout and a pop-up while throwing all of eight pitches. Then he threw 12 more in the bullpen to work on spotting his breaking ball.
Ryan had not pitched in a game since March 11. His next assignment comes tomorrow in the Jays final exhibition game.
As for that long fallow period, he said he tried not to think about the possibility that he would lose his edge.
"I just continued to work hard and do what I was able to do in the weight room and keep on doing my arm [conditioning] so I wouldn't lose any strength that I had built up to that point," he said. "I think I did a pretty good job."
Ryan had 38 saves and a 1.37 ERA last year.
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