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Reed doesn't need saves to prepare as closer

Reed doesn't need saves to prepare as closer

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- White Sox closer Addison Reed has appeared in six Cactus League games, not to mention Minor League games such as Saturday, where he threw two innings and struck out four over 36 pitches. Not one of those appearances has come in a save situation.

Pitching the ninth inning and protecting a lead during Spring Training doesn't matter much to the 24-year-old who set a single-season franchise rookie record with 29 saves last year. It's all about the work.

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"I'd be fine throwing the first inning and I'm fine throwing an inning in the Minor League games," Reed said. "As long as I'm getting my arm strength up there, getting innings, getting work. It doesn't make any difference."

That closing "feel" comes whenever Reed takes the mound during Spring Training.

"My mindset is if I go out there in the first inning, I'm taking it as three guys up and I'm trying to get those three guys out in consecutive order," Reed said. "I don't think that I have to throw the ninth inning in a game to get that feel."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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