Griffin feels 'really good' after rehab start

August 24, 2012, 4:27 am
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SACRAMENTO -- A.J. Griffin took the mound on Wednesday in his first game action since exiting his last start in Oakland with right shoulder tightness. He has been on the disabled list for 16 days.Griffin threw 60 pitches in two and two thirds innings of work. He allowed three runs on four hits and three walks. He struck out four batters. The results aren't that important. What is important is how his right shoulder felt on the mound, and the day after. "I felt really good last night, just a little rusty on the location side of it," Griffin said on Thursday. "My arm felt great, and it feels good today, so it's looking good so far."The rust is to be expected since the righty hasn't pitched since August 4 when he exited a game after just one and two-thirds innings. "He looked like he was just missing a little bit off, a little bit in," River Cats manager Darren Bush said. "An inch here, an inch there throughout the entire game it's a completely different result." Bush says that Griffin looked good mechanically and that is the most important thing. Griffin says he was trying to be aggressive on the mound. He admits that he was missing his locations but he says he's happy because he missed down in the zone limiting damage. "That's a better place to miss than airmailing stuff," Griffin said. "I was missing with conviction and purpose. I've just got to get it a little more fine tuned and find the plate a little bit better."Griffin says the plan is to go 80 pitches or six innings in his next start -- whatever comes first. If that goes well, the assumption is that he'd be working his way up to around 100 pitches before the A's would consider bringing him back. He was eligible to return on August 20. So far he has cleared the first hurdle. "Fastball wise I felt a lot better," Griffin said. "I was getting good extension on everything, my pitches all had pretty good action on them. So I was pretty happy with it."Griffin was 3-0 with a 2.42 ERA in eight starts with Oakland. With a spot open in the rotation Griffin could soon be competing with his friend Dan Straily to get back to the bigs. Though he'd rather not think about it."I have no control over that at the end of the day," Griffin said. "It is what it is."