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Scott Kazmir Throws Sliders & B.J. Upton Strikes Out

Just a quick recap on two major league players playing for minor league teams today.

*Warning* the following is heavy on spring training cliches.

Scott Kazmir threw 89 pitches in today's Triple-A game. Kaz gave up four runs on six hits in 5.1 Innings. It took him a Kazmir-like 21 pitches to get through the first inning. However, he did strike out seven and after the game he let the cliches fly.

Kazmir was really encouraged after throwing more sliders in a game than he had all spring, and said it was "definitely the best it's felt in a while." Kazmir said his slider felt better than it did all of last season, pointing out how he was able to throw it for strikes, on first pitch, or 1-0 counts, and got a couple strikeouts on it.

"Today, it felt like I wasn't thinking about it - it was coming off my hand perfect," Kazmir said. "I was right on top of it."

"My arm feels way stronger every single start," Kazmir said. "This start here, I felt the strongest, for sure."---Heater

Equally as cliche' was B.J. Upton, who went 0-4 in the game with three strikeouts. He also played four innings in the outfield and stole a base.

Upton flied out to rightfield, but noted that when he swung and missed, "it felt pretty good - so we're moving forward."

 "As far as the stamina I was pretty good today, I probably could have gone longer if they would have let me, but obviously they wouldn’t," Upton said. "So hopefully we’ll get to five or six innings (soon)."--Heater

Overall, good news on both players. In fact, I felt pretty good writing this. It's the strongest typing I've done in a while.