Spring is stretch time for Putz

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- It's not often you'll hear D-backs closer J.J. Putz say he likes to have a runner on first base.

But this is Spring Training, the time to work on things and one of those is pitching out of the stretch.

"It was good to work on slide steps and varying my times to home plate, which is something we take pride in here," Putz said. "It's one thing to work on slide steps in the bullpen when you can create your own tempo. But once you get out there, everything is faster and I felt a little jumpy. I'm going to have to look at some video, but times were good to the plate."

Tuesday night was the first outing of the spring for Putz and he tossed a scoreless inning, allowing one hit.

The one thing Putz did not get to do was throw his signature split-finger fastball.

"I wasn't really planning on waiting on it, but there just wasn't a good time to throw it," Putz said. "Threw two sliders, though. It was a good outing."

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.