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03/02/09 4:45 PM ET
Laffey brushes off shaky outing
Left-hander allows four runs in two innings but feels 'great'
By Anthony Castrovince / MLB.com
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- When Aaron Laffey walked off the mound after his second and final inning against the Rangers on Monday, he joked that it was "just another day at the office."
That is, if you work in an office where the water cooler leaks, the fax machine eats paper and the copier catches on fire. Because this was no clean outing for the left-hander.
It started out innocently enough, as Laffey retired the side in order in the first. But in the second, he saw two grounders get through the infield, one line drive strike an umpire for a base hit and a squibbler down the third-base line turn into a run-scoring single because of a throwing error by Wes Hodges.
By the time it was over, Laffey had given up four runs on six hits -- an ugly line for a guy competing for the Indians' last rotation spot.
"It's Spring Training," he said. "It's no big deal. I threw the ball really well. It's better to have a day like this now than in the regular season."
As a sinkerball pitcher who induces sharp grounders, Laffey knows he'll have days like this -- days where the ball squeaks through or his defense betrays him.
"It's something I've talked to Jake Westbrook about before," he said. "You have to instantly push it aside. You move on to the next pitch."
Laffey, who battled elbow trouble last year, was happy with the action on his sinker, changeup and slurve against the Rangers. He'll progress to a three-inning outing in his next start.
"I feel great physically, no matter what the scoreboard says," he said. "You can have days where you feel great and give up runs and days where you feel terrible and pitch eight scoreless."
Anthony Castrovince is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.