Pedro Feliciano said he wasn’t anxious before taking the mound yesterday for the first time with a heart monitor in his back pocket and wires strapped to his chest.
“The hardest part has been the waiting,” Feliciano said this week. “The week when I wasn’t allowed to do anything before I got cleared, that was the most difficult part.”
That’s part of the reason Feliciano was in such good spirits following his outing, despite the fact the first batter he faced homered.
“It’s good to get it out of the way right away,” Feliciano said with a laugh following Ben Lasater’s blast in a B game against the Marlins on a back field behind Roger Dean Stadium.
Feliciano said he felt “outstanding” during his one-inning outing when he faced batters from both sides of the plate — something the lefty specialist is unlikely to do during the regular season.
“It was better than what I expected,” Feliciano said.
The 36-year-old has made more headlines because of health issues than anything he’s done pitching over the past two seasons.
He never pitched for the Yankees after signing a two-year, $8 million contract and then he signed a minor league deal with the Mets this offseason in an attempt to revive his career as a second lefty out of the bullpen.
That effort was dealt a blow when he was diagnosed last month with a rare genetic condition called left ventricular noncompaction. The condition results from the failure of myocardial development from birth.
He reported no symptoms before the diagnosis and yesterday he said the equipment he will have to wear for at least one more outing had no impact.
“I didn’t think about it,” Feliciano said. “It was easy.”
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