Pedro throws from mound, cites 'work' to do

Updated: February 28, 2006, 6:18 PM ET
Associated Press

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Pedro Martinez threw from the top of a mound for the first time at New York Mets spring training camp Tuesday, and acknowledged he still has a lot of work to do before Opening Day.

Pedro Martinez

"I'm out of shape," Martinez told a group of reporters before walking off the field. "I'm just trying to get back to the mound, see how my toe is. My arm is not full-strength. I still have a lot of work to do."

Martinez threw 34 pitches to catcher Bobby Estallella with pitching coach Rick Peterson and bullpen coach Guy Conti watching. None of his pitches appeared full-speed.

Martinez said he has to concentrate on getting his foot healthy before he can strengthen his arm.

"Because I want to have my arm in good shape, I need to have my legs in good shape," he said. "Without a leg, there is no arm."

He expects to be ready for Opening Day, and Mets manager Willie Randolph said he wasn't concerned.

"Pedro will be ready," Randolph said. "I trust Pedro that he'll be ready to go. That's what I go by."

Martinez threw from the slope of the mound for the first time in camp last week after a sore right toe kept him in the clubhouse for the opening weeks of spring training. Martinez said he wasn't sure going into to Tuesday's practice whether he would throw from the rubber.

He tried a few pitches from halfway up the mound before climbing to the top.

"I feel the toe a little bit now but I prefer to do it like that and get used to doing it the way I normally do it and see what the results are going to be," Martinez said.

He said his toe feels better in the new Nike cleat he had custom-made for him.

"So far, healthwise, it's improving," Martinez said. "I was expecting to feel the way I feel right now. It's improving a little bit.

Martinez expected to throw again on Wednesday.

"So far, I bounced well enough to get back to the mound, so I'm not probably going to stop until something goes wrong," he said.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press