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Webb developing into reliable arm out of bullpen

Webb developing into reliable arm out of bullpen

HOUSTON -- Daniel Webb currently works whenever needed out of the White Sox bullpen, throwing 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief in Saturday's loss. But the right-hander is showing the stuff that makes up a closer, which should be in Webb's future.

Left-handed hitters are just 6-for-39 against Webb this season, and 12-for-62 in his career. It's a change for the better that began for Webb last season, when he moved over to the first-base side of the rubber.

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"That may have something to do with it," Webb said. "I'm also better at throwing my slider inside to a lefty than I am throwing it away to a righty.

"It's just you have more of a straight line to the inside part of the plate," said Webb of moving to the first-base side of the rubber. "It has helped me with my fastball away to righties too. It's more straight, and if you are over on the third-base side, you have to throw across the plate to get it there."

When Webb gets to two strikes with a hitter, they are 5-for-37 against him with 18 strikeouts. Being able to finish off the opposition, while also handling left-handers or right-handers, could make for an interesting ninth-inning future mix.

"I think that is everybody's goal in the bullpen is to be a closer someday," Webb said. "I was happy to have my name thrown into the mix on possible closing [in Spring Training]. That's my ultimate goal someday. But right now, I just need to get outs whenever they need me."

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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