LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Kris Medlen gets his second start of the spring on Saturday, and the sounds as if he might be able to run to Port St. Lucie, Fla., instead of taking the Braves bus for the game against the Mets.
“I’m just ready to go,” said Medlen, who will start the split-squad road game while Brandon Beachy starts for the Braves at home Saturday against Toronto.
“I’m ready to get stretched out, or maybe not get stretched out – I’m just excited about pitching,” Medlen said. “I don’t care what I’m doing.”
He’s penciled in for the bullpen, but the Braves are using him for multiple innings at a time this spring to get him stretched out as a starter in case he’s needed in that role.
Medlen allowed three hits and one run in two innings in a start against Washington in his March 6 spring debut, then worked two scoreless relief innings (two hits, no walks) against the Marlins on Tuesday.
That’s a lot of down time between games for the energetic right-hander.
“Just try to make the most of the opportunity, keep throwing strikes and doing what I do,” said Medlen, who prefers starting but just wants to pitch. He missed most of 2010 recovering from ligament-transplant elbow surgery.
“I would assume I’d go three [innings on Saturday] since I’ve gone two the first couple of times out,” he said. “But it’s really up to them, what they want to stretch me out to.”
He found out Friday that he’d be starting Saturday, but that was fine by Medlen.
“You could tell me that day that I’m starting,” he said. “It doesn’t matter. I don’t care.”
Medlen will be followed in relief by lefty prospect Sean Gilmartin, who struck out three in two scoreless innings Sunday against Toronto in his second spring game and first start.