GLENDALE, Ariz. -- After walking six of the first 10 batters he faced this spring, the Dodgers went back to the drawing board with left-hander Scott Elbert.
Actually, it was back to the back field earlier this week to throw pitching practice, which is batting practice with a purpose for the pitcher.
The improvement was impressive, as Elbert pitched a scoreless inning Thursday. He did walk one but also struck out one and didn't allow a hit.
"Still more misses than you'd like, but he got through the inning," said pitching coach Rick Honeycutt. "You can see the electricity when he's in the zone. Nobody squares up the fastball, and the slider is electric. You hope he keeps working and things start clicking and he's able to repeat it."
Elbert said instructors are stressing to him to slow down everything -- his delivery, his pace of the game, even his mind-set.
"I was able to focus and keep my composure and get the ball down and over the plate," Elbert said. "I tried to hump up on one pitch to see where I'm at but was able to get back in a groove. It's a relief."
Said Honeycutt: "Scott has a tendency to go harder, faster, and that's not the best way to go."
Broxton's shaky outing no concern to Dodgers
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- After flashing the reliable form of 2008 and 2009 in his first two spring outings, Jonathan Broxton had a flashback to the second half of last year while losing Thursday's game to the Padres.
The Dodgers' closer allowed a home run to the first batter he opposed, Jarrett Hoffpauir, and didn't retire any of the five batters he faced, charged with four runs while allowing three hits, a walk and a hit batter.
Reason for concern, manager Don Mattingly?
"I'm not concerned about him," Mattingly said. "Nothing is going to happen outside of an injury right now; we're still getting guys ready. I've watched some of the best get beat up good in Spring Training. Goose [Gossage] was a power guy and he got hit pretty good in spring."
2010 Spring Training - Los Angeles Dodgers
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Reason for concern, pitching coach Rick Honeycutt?
"No, not yet," Honeycutt said. "I still look at this as a work day. You don't want a negative outcome as today was from the point of view of what everybody wants to see, but on March 10th he's not going to have his game velocity."
Honeycutt said he has spoken to Broxton about shifting his positioning from the first-base side of the rubber to the third-base side to better command the outside corner and get better extension against right-handed hitters.
"We've talked about it, but he hasn't done it," Honeycutt said. "He's open to it. We'll see where that goes."
De La Rosa, Schlichting get back to throwing
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Dodgers pitchers Rubby De La Rosa and Travis Schlichting returned to the mound Thursday after being sidelined recently for precautionary reasons.
De La Rosa, who last pitched in a game March 3, had developed slight tenderness in his right pitching shoulder, but he had a 31-pitch bullpen session and said he felt fine. He's scheduled to pitch in Sunday's game.
Apparently, he has had occasional issues with the shoulder in the past that have been minor. The 22-year-old power pitcher was last year's organization Pitcher of the Year, splitting time between Class A Great Lakes and Double-A Chattanooga. His composite four-year ERA is 2.90 with a .225 opponents' batting average.
Schlichting, who hasn't pitched in a game since March 4, also had a bullpen session, his first since a flare-up of a stomach ailment that has troubled him the past year and a half.
Schlichting has Gilbert's Syndrome, which results in increased bilirubin levels and, in Schlichting's case, is believed to have caused fatigue and nausea that led to a 30-pound weight loss in 2009.
The current episode isn't that severe, but the smell of certain foods triggers a nauseous reaction in Schlichting. The condition is inherited and the symptoms are unpredictable, he said. He thought that a carefully structured diet would eliminate the symptoms, but they came on again this week.
Schlichting, 26, had four big league stints with the Dodgers last year, going 1-0 with a 3.57 ERA, and had an outside chance to make the club out of Spring Training.
Kuo to throw BP instead of bullpen session
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Hong-Chih Kuo's customized Spring Training has been amended and he will pitch batting practice Friday instead of throwing a bullpen session, Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said.
Kuo will make 20 pitches. He threw his first inning of an exhibition game on Wednesday.
With split-squad games Saturday and Sunday, the Dodgers also are hoping for a quick return by pitchers Jon Link and Lance Cormier, who missed practice Thursday with the flu.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.