Notes: Medders gets first game action

Notes: Medders gets first game action

TUCSON, Ariz. -- In his first game action of the spring, reliever Brandon Medders threw one inning in a Double-A game on Wednesday.

Medders, who will begin the season on the disabled list, threw 15 pitches in getting three White Sox Minor Leaguers to ground out, pop out and strike out swinging.

"I was confident that I was going to feel good going out there," said Medders, who pulled a muscle below his shoulder blade just prior to the start of camp. "I guess that helped too, if I had been a little iffy about how I'm going to feel out there, it could have been bad, but I felt good."

Medders used a mix of fastballs and changeups and then threw another 15 or so pitches -- including some breaking balls -- in the bullpen to complete his work for the day. His next action should come in a Minor League game on Saturday.

The club is using him in Minor League games so that his stint on the disabled list can be retroactive, which would allow him to be eligible to come off the DL on April 8.

"The thing that made me happy was that he was just letting it go," D-Backs pitching coach Bryan Price said. "I didn't see any reservation about throwing the ball."

The Diamondbacks want their pitchers to establish their fastball and throw strikes down in the zone in their first few spring outings, which Medders was able to do. Another plus for Medders is that not throwing his breaking stuff in the game forced him to work on his changeup, which he considers his fourth-best pitch.

"It's nice to get out there and finally be in a game," he said. "I don't think I really focus in until I get a batter in there. I need a batter there to get the full feel. It's a focal point for me. I feel more comfortable with a batter in the box."

And then there were two: The Diamondbacks optioned reliever Jeff Bajenaru to Minor League camp, reducing the competition for the final bullpen spot to right-handers Greg Aquino and Casey Daigle.

"It's a close race," general manager Josh Byrnes said. "A very, very close race."

Even if he doesn't end up making the Opening Day roster, Daigle has certainly made an impression on manager Bob Melvin and the baseball staff. One year after being taken off the 40-man roster and pitching in Double-A, Daigle has reinvented himself, thanks to the development of a two-seam fastball.

"If he were not to be one of the guys that made the team, I would have a hard time believing he wasn't going to pitch up here at some point this year," Melvin said.

Daigle, whose wife, Jennie Finch, is due to give birth to the couple's first child in three weeks, said he's just trying to go about his business and not think about the looming decision.

"I'm just trying to do everything I can do," Daigle said before Wednesday's game. "I feel good. I've felt like I've thrown the ball to my capabilities. I've just tried to keep my head on straight and keep my nose to the ground. I'm just waiting to hear."

ASU vs. UA at Chase: Sunday will be the first annual "Challenge at Chase" -- a baseball game between Arizona State University and the University of Arizona.

Proceeds from the game, which will start at 5 p.m. MT, will go toward the building or refurbishing of youth baseball and softball fields. The fields will be located throughout the state and will feature the logos of the Diamondbacks and the two universities. The partnership plans to host youth clinics and camps in the future at those fields.

Tickets for the will range from $10-$20, with discounts being offered for juniors 12 years of age and younger, senior citizens and students with identification. Tickets are available at the Chase Field box office, or by calling 602-514-8400 or 888-777-4664.

Lower level tickets will be just $3 for students, groups of 10 or more and anyone who brings a stub from either of the Yankees exhibition games Friday and Saturday.

Terrero out: Outfielder Luis Terrero, who was out of Minor League options, was placed on waivers for the purpose of giving him his unconditional release. The club could have tried to outright him to the Minors and taken their chances with him clearing waivers, but given the organization's depth in the outfield, decided to let him go.

"We felt like it was more appropriate to release him and let him find another job," Byrnes said.

Tuning up: Brandon Webb, who will start Monday's opener in Denver, got in his final spring work on Wednesday when he threw five innings against the White Sox Triple-A team.

Webb allowed eight runs -- seven earned -- on seven hits and struck out five. He did not walk a batter while throwing 93 pitches.

This and that: Andy Green saw action in left field for the first time this spring on Wednesday. ... Melvin would like to get Damion Easley a few innings in right during the Yankees series, as long as the tendinitis in the veteran's elbow doesn't prevent it.

Up next: The Diamondbacks close out the Cactus League campaign with a 12:05 p.m. MT game against the Cubs on Thursday. Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez will make his final appearance of the spring against Jerome Williams.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.