How low can he go? Royals' Kennedy has spring ERA of 0.00

SURPRISE, Ariz. (AP) Ian Kennedy has never had a spring training like this. Rest assured, he is not about to allow the numbers go to his head.

The Kansas City Royals broke camp with Kennedy not allowing a run in 17 1/3 innings in four Cactus League starts. He held opponents to a .155 batting average, allowing nine hits, striking out 19 and walking three.

''I've always given up runs,'' Kennedy said. ''Usually by the end of spring training, I've had solid outings, where it makes you feel good going into the season, but I can't say this is added (confidence).

''It's still spring training. If I had a bad spring, I'd say, `Oh I had a bad spring.' I try not to be too high or too low. I try not to look too much into it. I'm still a realist. I still know its spring training. Some of the guys I won't face during the year.''

Kennedy finished last spring training, his first with the Royals, with an 0-3 record and a 6.30 ERA in six starts. His career spring record is 13-13 with a 4.05 ERA over 188 2/3 innings.

''From the very beginning, I approached as if it was any other spring,'' Kennedy said. ''My first three outings, I was trying to work on fastball command, get that checked off. Like that's another check point, that I could make adjustments throughout the outing.

''And then throwing my off-speed pitches. I told the catchers in my second and third outings, every other batter let's throw more breaking balls to get my breaking ball feel. It was just normal. It might have come a little quicker than normal. There's no secret.''

Kennedy is no Thomas Edison, inventing new pitches to add to his repertoire.

''I'm at that part of my career, where I don't really,'' the 32-year-old veteran said. ''I just try to fine-tune what I have. I am who I am. ... I don't know what else I can add at this point.''

Nor has he asked teammate Peter Moylan to teach him his sidearm delivery.

''Nothing like that,'' Kennedy said.

Kennedy was 11-11 with a 3.68 ERA in 33 starts last season. He will start the Royals' second game of the season Wednesday at Minnesota

He has one more exhibition outing, Friday against the Texas Rangers at Arlington. He says it wouldn't matter to him if he give up a run to end his scoreless streak.

''I'm just trying to use that to get fine-tuned for the season,'' Kennedy said. ''It's nice to write about.''

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