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Gibson makes progress with effective outing

Right-hander is experimenting with a new throwing motion this spring
MLB.com @RhettBollinger

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- For Twins right-hander Kyle Gibson, his overhauled delivery remains a work in progress, but he was encouraged by the results after a strong showing against the Cardinals in a 2-1 win at Hammond Stadium on Monday.

Gibson, who has worked with weighted balls and a balloon-shaped connection ball to help shorten his arm path, tossed four innings, allowing one run on two hits with a walk and two strikeouts. But even more than the results, he was happy he corrected his mechanics, after running into some issues during a throwing session in between starts.

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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- For Twins right-hander Kyle Gibson, his overhauled delivery remains a work in progress, but he was encouraged by the results after a strong showing against the Cardinals in a 2-1 win at Hammond Stadium on Monday.

Gibson, who has worked with weighted balls and a balloon-shaped connection ball to help shorten his arm path, tossed four innings, allowing one run on two hits with a walk and two strikeouts. But even more than the results, he was happy he corrected his mechanics, after running into some issues during a throwing session in between starts.

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"I felt playing catch the last few days, with all the mechanical things, I was drifting back to what I was doing before," Gibson said. "I was trying to get back on track. I felt better shortening up a little bit. I'm still working on it basically every day, but it's getting to the point where I can feel when things get out of sync."

Video: Bollinger on Gibson needing to improve in 2017

 Gibson doesn't consciously think of those changes while out on the mound, but said he's getting a better feel for when his throwing motion is off. One of those challenges is implementing those changes while in the stretch, as he said he's left too many balls up with runners on, including a changeup Kolten Wong hit to right-center for an RBI single.

"It's been one of the bigger battles, to keep the ball from being elevated out of the stretch," Gibson said. "I'm trying to use my legs a little more and it's causing me to come a little faster to home plate. So I'm trying to get that timing down and get the ball down."

Gibson, though, was efficient, throwing 60 pitches and getting first-pitch strikes to six of the 15 batters he faced.

"It's encouraging when you're checking counts up at the scoreboard and you see 1-2, 2-2 a lot," Gibson said. "That's the goal for me. Getting to two strikes as fast as possible to be in control of the at-bat."

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Minnesota Twins, Kyle Gibson