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Cleveland Indians

Pavano's command creates problems

By Sheldon Published: March 20, 2009

Carl Pavano struggled through his worst outing of the spring, giving up six runs in four innings, as the Indians beat the Oakland Athletics 7-6 Friday at Goodyear Ballpark.

Among the seven hits Pavano allowed were three doubles, one triple and Cliff Pennington's home run.

"I felt good, actually,'' Pavano said. ""Result-wise, you never want to give up six runs, but I wanted to establish some things. I was trying to use my legs and reach out toward the plate.''

Executing the kind of delivery Pavano was searching for would help his ball move later in its flight to the plate, just as it reached the hitter.

""I felt I had better life on the ball today,'' he said. ""I was using my body more in my delivery. The more pitches I throw in spring training, the better my body starts to feel. Before, I knew I had to make an adjustment, but I just couldn't feel it.''

Manager Eric Wedge felt Pavano's troubles could be traced to the location of his pitches.

""The baseball was doing what he wanted it to do,'' Wedge said. ""But he was up a little. He felt strong, which is a good thing. But his pitches were a little above the glove instead of a little below the glove.''

When will Pavano be ready to start the season?

""The next couple of starts are big for me,'' he said. ""But I've left camp some years with stuff that isn't as good as it is right now.''

COMPETITION CONTINUES -- Scott Lewis put together another strong outing, working four scoreless innings, allowing four hits and two walks.

He threw a double-play ball to get out of one inning and struck out two with two on in the ninth to end the game.

""You saw a lot of things you want to see,'' Wedge said. ""There were certain situations they created and certain situations that he got into, but he made pitches when he needed to.''

Lewis is in a battle with Jeremy Sowers and Aaron Laffey to be the No. 5 starter. Wedge won't say who is in the lead, if anyone, but he did say of Lewis, ""He's right in the middle of everything. We've seen him pick up where he left off last year.''

After Lewis was summoned to the big leagues for the first time, he posted a 4-0 record in four starts.

WHOOPS -- It's spring training for the umpires, too.

When Jack Hannahan lifted a fly to center in the seventh inning, Josh Barfield ran a long way, finally catching up to the ball, which initially landed in his glove. But as he tumbled to the grass, the ball eluded him, and Hanrahan pulled into second.

However, none of the three umpires saw the ball come out of Barfield's glove, and Hanrahan was ruled out.

What was Barfield doing in center field? He is learning to play the outfield, as is Ryan Garko, who started in left.

MARCHING ONWARD -- Goodyear Ballpark will play host to its first sellout of the season this afternoon, with 10,000 or more fans expected, as the Indians play the Los Angeles Dodgers. Anthony Reyes will start against Hiroki Kuroda. Jeremy Sowers, Kirk Saarloos, Vinnie Chulk and Greg Aquino also are scheduled to pitch.

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