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Split-finger tweaks may have landed Farnsworth on DL in 2012

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- After serving as the Rays closer in 2011, Kyle Farnsworth began the '12 season on the disabled list after suffering a right elbow strain during Spring Training.

The veteran right-hander missed 77 games before being activated on June 30, posting a 1-6 mark with a 4.00 ERA in 34 appearances.

Looking back to what happened, Farnsworth, 36, believes the problem stemmed from tinkering with the split-finger fastball.

"I think it was just throwing the splitty," Farnsworth said. "I know early in my career I'd throw the splitty and it would give my elbow little aches here and there. Every time I'd try to throw it, it would do the same thing."

Farnsworth noted that not all pitchers can throw the pitch, and he offered his opinion about why the pitch can irritate a pitcher's arm.

"I think when you spread your fingers apart, it puts more pressure on your elbow ligament," Farnsworth said.

Farnsworth, who is known for being a physical specimen, said he has made adjustments in his regimen over the years.

"I used to work out super hard back in the day," Farnsworth said. "Now, I don't work out as hard. The older you get, the more you have to adjust to let your body recover. You want to be loose, too."