SURPRISE, Ariz. -- When left-hander John Bale walked into the Royals clubhouse, Gil Meche asked him how he did.Bale pitched a 1-2-3 sixth inning in the Royals "B" game, 3-1 victory over the Rangers. "Better than my first inning," Meche said. Meche gave up a run in the first inning and had problems keeping the ball down. "The first inning was horrible," Meche said. "I was just real erratic to start off the game and just slowed it down a little bit. I made some really good pitches the next three innings." Pitching coach Bob McClure has been working with Meche to land on the ball of his foot. "I'm trying not to land on my heel," Meche said. "Mac kept yelling it out every time I'd throw." Meche said he does not like pitching in "B" games, but that it has value. "It is hard to get a little adrenaline going at 10 o'clock in the morning over there [on a back field]," Meche said. "I had real good arm speed. You can go out and work more on things than if it is a normal game. Mac probably wouldn't be yelling like he was today. It was more of a one-on-one kind of thing. You could watch your pitch count a little bit easier." Meche threw 64 pitches and will be up to 70-75 pitches in his next start. "I'm just glad my arm feels great," he said. "A lot of times in camp, my elbow might be a little sore here and there, but this spring, I haven't had any problems. It probably has a lot to do with me trying not to land on my heel. They've been working with me on that daily, so it is freeing up my arm a little bit and it is starting to work a little bit smoother. Hopefully, that comes with control and having better stuff later in the game, because I won't be so tired. "I'm not getting tired. I felt fine in the fourth. I came here ready to go. I can't wait to get out of here and get going. I know we just started games not too long ago, but I'm ready to get this thing going. I'm ready to pitch." In four innings, Meche gave up four hits and one run, walked none and struck out three.
Alan Eskew is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.