PHILADELPHIA -- While proving successful against the Marlins and Astros during his first two Major League starts since 2010, Kris Medlen has appeared to be at ease. But since the Braves moved him from the bullpen to the starting rotation last week, the hyperactive pitcher has had trouble biding his time between starts.
"I feel great, but it's that stupid starting-pitchers running stuff," the jovial Medlen said. "It's 30 minutes continuous. So I just did 20 minutes of poles and then 10 minutes of sprints. It's more boring than anything."
During his days as a reliever, Medlen would do something on a daily basis to maintain the conditioning level he built during Spring Training. Instead of attempting to build his endurance by running for 30 straight minutes, he might stretch his legs with some light jogging in the outfield grass.
"The running is the worst," Medlen said when asked about being a starting pitcher again for the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery in August 2010.
Since battling nerves in the first two starts of his career in 2009, Medlen has been as reliable as any member of Atlanta's rotation. He has gone 7-0 with a 3.62 ERA in his past 18 starts, and the Braves have won 16 of those games.
In fact, the Braves have won each of the past 13 starts he has made dating back to May 29, 2010.
Medlen was moved into the Braves' rotation last week when they were unsure whether they would add a starting pitcher before the non-waiver Trade Deadline. Even with the acquisition of Paul Maholm, he stayed in the rotation to fill the void created when Tommy Hanson was placed on the disabled list.
"Once I'm given the ball, I just want to take it and run with it, not physically run around with it," Medlen said. "But you know what I'm saying."