Matheny wants Kelly, Martinez to keep the same approach to close spring

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by Brian Feldman / BaseballStL | @BFeldman

KMOV.com

Posted on March 19, 2014 at 10:27 AM

Updated Wednesday, Mar 19 at 10:32 AM

BaseballStL is in Jupiter for spring training. Follow us on twitter @BaseballStL_app and follow our writers @TheJJBailey, @MauriceDrummond and @BFeldman for videos, articles and analysis.

(BaseballStL) -- 12 days until the season starts. Just four starting pitchers have essentially been named. For those counting at home, that's one shy of a full rotation.

Carlos Martinez and Joe Kelly are in the final days of battling it out for a starting spot alongside Adam Wainwright, Shelby Miller, Michael Wacha and Lance Lynn. 

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Manager Mike Matheny wants those two to keep the exact same approach they've had all spring training long.

"They're competing against themselves," Matheny said. "There's always someone wanting to take your job so the competition is always on.  Just continue to figure out gaps in your game and how you can get better."

Martinez starts today and will go to approximately 80 pitches against the Twins.  The 22-year old has not surrendered a run since the first inning of his first start back on February 28th against the Marlins.  

But it's the opponent Matheny wants these guys focusing on.

"They're also getting into that mode of pure competition where we're playing against the other team and we play to win. [Kelly and Martinez are] working on multiple things but I like the way they're going about it," Matheny said.

There's less than two weeks to make a decision.

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