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Schuster moving past bad first impression

Schuster moving past bad first impression

PEORIA, Ariz. -- There wasn't much for Patrick Schuster to like about his Padres debut on Feb. 27, as the left-hander allowed three runs (one earned) on four hits in one inning against the Mariners.

"It kind of got out of control," Schuster said. "That was definitely not what I wanted my first impression to be for these guys."

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Schuster, trying to make the team as a lefty specialist, had to wait until Sunday to get another chance to pitch, though the results made the wait worth it.

Schuster faced four hits, allowing one hit, against the Dodgers. Better yet, Schuster retired the two left-handed batters he faced, Clint Robinson on a ground ball and Nick Buss on a fly ball.

"I made some good pitches and got some lefties out, which is what I need to do," he said. "I think in the first game I was trying to nibble on the corners too much. I was holding a lot back. [Sunday], I wasn't so much concerned with where it was going but more letting my movement on the ball do what it needed to do."

Schuster then worked a scoreless inning against the D-backs on Tuesday and also picked off a batter at first base, the play resulting in an out after a rundown.

San Diego manager Bud Black said the team is still considering carrying two lefties in the bullpen, as Alex Torres will make the team, though not in a specialist role. Tony Sipp is the other lefty in camp getting a look this spring.

"We're talking about it," Black said. "We're looking for the best seven pitchers, though. We're going to keep the best pitcher."

Schuster figures to get many more opportunities moving forward, as the Padres continue to evaluate him. But because he was selected in the Rule 5 Draft by the Astros -- from the D-backs organization -- Schuster must remain on the Padres' big league roster all season or be offered back to the D-backs.

"It's all a player wants, the opportunity to decide where they're going to go," he said. "I know that if I throw the ball well, I've got a good chance of making the squad."

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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