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So happy first impressions don't matter: Aaron Harang struggles

March 07, 2012|By Steve Dilbeck
  • Dodgers pitcher Aaron Harang throws during a spring training workout session in Phoenix on Feb. 22.
Dodgers pitcher Aaron Harang throws during a spring training workout session… (Jae C. Hong / Associated…)

Another exhibition game, another performance to write off to those early days of spring. It is absolutely required.

This time is was starter Aaron Harang making his Dodgers debut, spring edition, and looking a lot like a guy making his first preseason appearance of the year.

Harang was signed in the off-season to help offset the loss of Hiroki Kuroda. And much like Ted Lilly the previous day, Harang had himself one rough outing Wednesday against the A’s in a game called after it was tied 3-3 in nine innings.

It’s spring, they do those things.

Harang went two innings, but gave up four consecutive hits in the first as Oakland took a quick 2-0 lead. Those were the only hits he allowed. He did not walk or strike out a batter.

He was followed by right-hander Chris Withrow, a 2007 first-round pick whom Manager Don Mattingly has spoken highly of this spring. Some think Withrow, who turns 23 on April 1, could get called up at some point this season.

Withrow, however, threw Wednesday as if he was nervous. In his two innings, he gave up one run on one hit, one walk, one hit batter and two wild pitches. He struck out one.

The Dodgers also got the first preseason appearances of their late-inning duo of Kenley Jansen and Javy Guerra. Each threw a scoreless inning, though Guerra did walk a pair in the seventh.

Scott Elbert, currently the only left-hander penciled in in the bullpen, was also one of the five relievers that followed Withrow and did not allow a run.

The Dodgers offense was not exactly in high gear. It scored twice in the fourth inning on four walks, a stolen base and two groundouts. The Dodgers tied it in the seventh on an Ivan De Jesus Jr. single and Cory Sullivan double.

It remained 3-3 through nine innings when, with bullpens depleted, they called it a day.

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