"I feel much better about this," Tejeda said. "The last two games I didn't pitch like I was supposed to but this is Spring Training. If you keep working hard, everything will come together. I've pitched two years in the big leagues. I proved what I can do. I'm not saying anybody was scared but they wanted me to do my best and that's what I was trying to do."It wasn't a breeze. He allowed six hits and a walk. But center fielder Kenny Lofton saved one run by throwing out Bengie Molina trying to score from second base, Gerald Laird cut down one runner trying to steal second and a double play got Tejeda out of a jam in the fourth. Tejeda featured his best fastball of the spring but also mixed in a sharper slider and a more effective changeup. "I started Spring Training working on my fastball and changeup," Tejeda said. "Now I'm working on my slider. If you have a good fastball, your changeup can be your best pitch. I'm not saying I have a great slider but it can help keep hitters off balance." Gagne replaced Tejeda after four innings. In his first A game appearance since back and elbow surgeries, he gave up a leadoff home run to Kevin Frandsen, but then retired the next three hitters on two grounders and a strikeout. Gagne, who threw a simulated game on Sunday, wasn't scheduled to pitch on Tuesday but felt so good in the morning that he told Washington he was ready. "I was a little nervous in the bullpen," Gagne said. "But it was good to get the adrenaline going again. I felt good out there." Francisco, who had elbow surgery two years ago, looked good out there too, taking over in the sixth inning after Akinori Otsuka gave up a home run to Barry Bonds in his one inning of work. Francisco, who had a 4.50 ERA coming into the game, pitched two scoreless innings. He allowed a hit and a walk while striking out two. "He had his [split-finger fastball] and breaking ball in the strike zone," Washington said. "It made his fastball better." Francisco put a smile on the manager's face. Much did on the afternoon. Tuesday was hardly insignificant for Washington. "As you go along in Spring Training, things find a way to fall in place," Washington said. "We certainly made a statement with the guys we had on the mound today."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less