GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Matt Thornton is eager to put the pedal to the metal, but at age 36 he knows better. He pitched in a minor league game Wednesday, working on his harder breaking ball, and will skip two days before throwing in a game.
The tender elbow that sent Thornton for a precautionary MRI during the first week of camp is good, he insisted Thursday.
"I feel great, I really do,'' Thornton said.
"I'm looking forward now to throwing more often, honestly. To get out there more. I hate 'today off, tomorrow off, pitch in two days.' I'm tired of just throwing sidelines. It's part of the plan. And it's hard to stick to the plan.''
The plan is to keep the workhorse Thornton, whose 472 appearances since 2006 ranks first in the American League, strong through September.
"I almost went to [pitching coach Don Cooper] after my last outing and said. 'Let's scrap the sideline and let's pitch in a game. But pump the brakes. I want to be strong throughout the season and start throwing more often and bringing it all together in the next few outings.''