Originally posted on Fox Sports Southwest  |  Last updated 2/27/12
SURPRISE, Ariz. Texas right-hander Yu Darvish is starting to find his footing with the Rangers. The 60-million man spent Monday bobbing his head to reggae music in the clubhouse, speaking in Spanish with teammate Elvis Andrus and having his best throwing session yet. He even joked with the media that he was throwing at 120 percent in practice. Maybe the key to all of that was getting used to the L-screen the Rangers use when they throw batting practice to hitters. It's not something Darvish did in Japan but it's something the Rangers do. He wasn't comfortable with it in his first two throwing sessions but an adjustment he made in the placement of the scree Monday made a difference. He was sharp in his 34-pitch session against five Texas minor leaguers. "It (the ball) felt good coming out of my hand the way my body worked it was very good," said Darvish. "The first two times having that L-screen was a little uncomfortable. Today I kind of made an adjustment so the window was a little bit wider. I got a better view and felt very good throwing today." Next week Darvish won't be using the screen at all as the club announced its rotation for spring training. Darvish will make his first spring start March 7 against San Diego in Peoria. He's scheduled to throw two innings. The Rangers have added that game to their webcast schedule and the start will also be shown live on television in Japan. If he looks anything like he did Monday, it will make for must-see TV. "Quality," Rangers manager Ron Washington said in his assessment. "He had good run on the fastball, a tight slider and nice breaking ball. He had a throw a few splits before he got the feel for it but once he got the feel for it, it was nice also." Darvish, who addressed the media for the second time in spring training, said he wasn't trying to focus on a particular pitch in the session. He said he felt like he had better command Monday because he felt more comfortable with the screen in front of him. "I was more concerned how my body worked and how I felt and taking that from last time," Darvish said. "I was very satisfied with how it worked today." While he Japanese media contingent following Darvish in Surprise has shrunk, he did have another set of eyes watching him throw Monday. Masataka Nashida, who managed Darvish in Japan for the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters, watched Darvish throw in the bullpen and batting practice. "The bullpen session was not as good as I thought," Nashida said. "As for live BP facing the batters, it seems like he had more stuff than in the bullpen session. He doesn't like to pitch with the net (L-screen) in front of him. He's not used to that. He's never used that in Japan." L-screen or not, the hitters Darvish faced had nothing but praise for his performance. Darvish still hasn't faced any of the Texas regulars as pitching coach Mike Maddux determine who he'll face. Both Mike Bianucci and Vincent DiFazio came away impressed. "Every pitch that he throws has pretty good movement," said DiFazio, who didn't face anyone of Darvish's caliber in 2011 at Class A Myrtle Beach. "Everything's late. Very impressive." Bianucci, who hit 30 homers for Frisco last year, would have liked to have been the first batter to hit a BP homer off Darvish. "It would have been great to do it but with a guy with movement like that you're just trying to put a good swing on it," he said. "Especially with him, he's not going to make too many mistakes where you can hit a ball out of the ballpark." What impressed both hitters the most was Darvish's ability to mix pitches so well. Bianucci got a slider-breaking ball combo that fooled him. It was a sinker-splitter combo for DiFazio. Even though Darvish hasn't thrown more than 100 combined in his three batting practice sessions, he feels like he's on target for where need to be March 7. "To me I have no problems," Darvish said. "Even from the start I'm not the type to make a lot of quantity number of pitches. That type of practice method fits my needs."
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Five most anticipated September MLB call-ups
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

U.S. Soccer hands Solo six month suspension for Olympic comments

Report: Josh Gordon will be restricted free agent after 2016

Chargers release statement on Joey Bosa situation

Yoenis Cespedes says he will not opt out of Mets contract

Zach Johnson unloads on Olympic golf

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Drew Brees says players do not trust league office, Goodell

Lawsuit over Hall of Fame Game refiled after McAfee comments

Report: Griffin plans to re-sign with Clippers, won't be traded

Report: Wentz unlikely to see any playing time this season

Minnesota Wild names Prince’s ‘Let’s Go Crazy’ official goal song

Gabby Douglas joining judges for Miss America pageant

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for our favorite football movies

Hard not to be cynical about LeBron's 'Cleveland Hustles'

Familiar faces that won't be seen in the NFL this year

24 quintessential moments of Kobe Bryant's career

Revisiting the 10 biggest mistakes of the NFL offseason

One Gotta Go: NFL legends (and Jose Canseco!) have no love for Captain America

Four WNBA teams to pay attention to post-Olympic break

Madden 17 shows how vital a fresh coat of paint can be

Why people just can't get behind the Washington Nationals

Washington's Josh Norman speaks candidly about multiple NFL talking points

Derrick Rose: Knicks have chance to win every game

Ranking the MLB divisional races

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for our favorite football movies

Hard not to be cynical about LeBron James' 'Cleveland Hustles'

Ranking the uniforms of the NFL from worst to best

Familiar faces that won't be seen in the NFL this year

24 quintessential moments of Kobe Bryant's career

One Gotta Go: NFL legends (and Jose Canseco!) have no love for Captain America

Four WNBA teams to pay attention to post-Olympic break

Madden 17 shows how vital a fresh coat of paint can be

Why people just can't get behind the Washington Nationals

QUIZ: Name every player to win a championship with Kobe Bryant

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker