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Despite outing, Guthrie says he's 'barely' in gear

Despite outing, Guthrie says he's 'barely' in gear play video for Despite outing, Guthrie says he's 'barely' in gear

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie claims he feels like he's barely getting into gear. Manager Ned Yost sees him as close to ready for the season.

Whatever the case really may be, Guthrie made his third appearance in Thursday's 5-3 victory over the Indians and gave up two runs on five hits in four innings. He threw 69 pitches.

"I felt like I really haven't pitched in spring, it's kind of a weird feeling, but I'm at March 14 and I felt like this could've been my first outing," Guthrie said. "I'm still trying to find a rhythm. I think it's because the outings have been so spread out and the rainout made it feel like a not-a-game, so I honestly feel like this is my first time pitching in seven months."

In his last game, he worked three innings, giving up three runs to the Rockies before the rain arrived.

Against the Indians, Guthrie saw pluses and minuses, including a home run by Lonnie Chisenhall. With the Indians being a division opponent, Guthrie paid special attention because he's likely to see a lot of them this year.

"I try to experiment. See what works, see what doesn't. I think we found out a few things that don't and a few things that did," he said. "You try it all."

After many cool days in camp, the game-time temperature was 88 degrees, but Guthrie saw no particular benefit.

"The hottest of the spring," Guthrie said. "Unless the hot air gets me a strikeout or an automatic out, it has yet to help me."

Yost tried to put Guthrie's performance in perspective.

"You see what he does so well? Number one, he's professional. He uses this time to polish his mechanics, work on his delivery, get his tempo, really focuses on commanding his pitches," Yost said. "I thought his last two innings were better than his first two innings, and his first two weren't too bad. I thought he threw the ball well today. He's getting really close."

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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