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Duffy finds inconsistency in quest for fifth-starter spot

Duffy finds inconsistency in quest for fifth-starter spot play video for Duffy finds inconsistency in quest for fifth-starter spot

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Left-hander Danny Duffy didn't score many points on Friday in his quest to win the Royals' fifth and final rotation job.

Duffy lasted just two innings in the 9-9 tie with the A's, giving up five runs, and his Cactus League ERA jumped to 11.00 for nine innings of work. His competition, right-hander Yordano Ventura, has a 2.89 ERA for 9 1/3 innings.

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"I thought [Duffy] was real inconsistent, I thought he was fighting himself," manager Ned Yost said. "His stuff was good, I liked his breaking ball. He was just up with the fastball. I thought what he did tremendously today was control the running game -- that was really impressive."

Duffy still felt confident and pointed to his comeback showing last season.

"I went 2-0 last year in five starts with a sub-2.00 [1.85 ERA] so I know that I have something better than I'm showing right now," Duffy said. "They know it too. They've been watching me since I was 18. It's frustrating but you turn the page after I leave these doors today and get back after it tomorrow."

Lefty Bruce Chen, already slotted in the rotation, pitched four innings against San Diego Minor Leaguers on Friday and was reported to have done well although no line was available.

The pitcher that most impressed on Friday. Yost was his recent appointee to the bullpen, right-hander Wade Davis. He struck out the A's side in the fifth on 12 pitches.

"Wade Davis was lights out," Yost said. "That could be the best one-inning stint of the spring."

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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