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03/24/09 8:05 PM ET

Davis on track for start of season

D-backs lefty pleased with outing against San Francisco

TUCSON, Ariz. -- Doug Davis estimates that his career Spring Training ERA is somewhere around "21 or 22."

That could be one reason why the D-backs left-hander said all was well after a 2 2/3-inning, 58-pitch start against the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday at Tucson Electric Park that saw him give up four runs -- one earned -- while allowing five hits. The D-backs made one error in each of the first two innings that led to the three unearned runs.

"I felt great," Davis said. "The only thing was I was just a little upset about 2-0 counts, 2-1 counts, especially with big league hitters."

Still, getting his work in and feeling good on the mound are big steps for the left-hander, who missed two straight scheduled starts earlier this month because of irritation in his left triceps.

Davis, who made his fourth spring appearance and third start Tuesday, said he's on track to be ready for when the regular season begins.

He said the plan is to throw 80 pitches in his next outing, slated for Sunday at home against the Chicago White Sox, and then be ready to stretch it out even further in a preseason exhibition game against the White Sox at Chase Field on April 3.

D-backs manager Bob Melvin seemed to agree.

"I thought he threw reasonably well," Melvin said. "We didn't make some plays behind him, but he was reasonably sharp and got [almost] to 60 [pitches], right about where we'd expect him to be."

Through it all, Davis has not only managed to regain his health. His sense of humor is intact, too.

When asked about his fastball Tuesday, the soft-tossing southpaw said, "I felt like I had a little giddy-up. Maybe 85 or 86 [mph] today."

Doug Miller is reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.