GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Felipe Paulino feels good.
At the least he has that part working in his favor.
But after he made his second start of the spring Friday, the White Sox pitcher still has some fine-tuning ahead.
Paulino allowed some hard-hit balls, including a long two-run home run to Jay Bruce, and struck out five in three innings. He gave up four hits, three earned runs and walked one in a 4-3 White Sox victory over the Cincinnati Reds at Goodyear Ballpark.
“The good thing is all my four pitches are coming great,” Paulino said. “I just need to execute in the right moments. The only way we can fix that is pitch in games. I’m really blessed to be in games. ... I know everything will come together soon so we’ll see what happens.”
Paulino’s fastball averaged 92.5 mph in his previous start on Sunday, per brooksbaseball.net. That was the first good sign for the big right-hander this spring after surgeries in back-to-back seasons. Paulino had reconstructive elbow surgery in 2012 and had right shoulder surgery last September.
While there was no radar gun on Paulino on Friday, he felt good and was able to throw all four pitches in any count.
That’s all White Sox manager Robin Ventura is focused on for now.
“Last inning he was in there he was a little sharper,” Ventura said. “He probably threw some pitches he wants back, but down here he’s working on stuff and got one up to Bruce. Early on I thought he was up in the zone, then the last inning he was a little down in the zone where he was a little more effective down there.”
Execution is the next step for Paulino.
The way things are going, the right-hander isn’t concerned because he has four more starts left this spring.
“Compared to the first time I feel better,” Paulino said. “My pitches are coming great. I throw all my pitches today in any count. The only thing is I need to throw the pitch in the right moment. The only way to fix that is in a game, you face a hitter. ... I feel great. I will tell you that. I’ll tell everybody that. My arm is coming along great right now. I like how my recovery is coming.”