DUNEDIN, Fla. -- As Daniel Bard prepared to make his second-to-last Florida start, he faces something of a conundrum.
In his last start, Bard threw only one changeup and after the game, manager Bobby Valentine wondered why he hadn't featured the pitch more as part of his repertoire.
Bard said that he hadn't thrown more changeups because he was focused on getting better results and throwing a pitch he wasn't yet fully comfortable with would negatively impact his results as he battles for a rotation spot.
"It's a hard balance,'' acknowledged Valentine. "That's why I say that spring training is silly for all that evaluation and results dictating things. The guys who should work on pitches need to work on pitches because they're not polished. And if they get you behind in counts, which is where you don't want to be or those pitches get hit, then you're judged poorly.
"It's a weird Catch-22."
Valentine was asked how Bard would approach the Blue Jays -- the same team he faced five days ago.
"Daniel's been advised to get his work in," explained Valentine, "and do what he has to do to feel good about himself when he comes out of the game. And all the pitchers have.''