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03/07/12 8:30 PM ET

Grabow sees improvement in sore calf

PHOENIX, Ariz. -- Left-handed pitcher John Grabow, a non-roster invitee who had reported right calf soreness, was improved and expected to make a scheduled relief appearance Thursday. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said the discomfort came from running, but Grabow was able to take part in workouts Wednesda.

Grabow, 33, is trying to win a job as the second left-handed reliever. He has been in the Major Leagues the last eight seasons and spent 2011 with the Cubs, going 3-1 with a 4.76 ERA in 58 appearances rebounding from a torn medial collateral ligament in his left knee suffered in 2010.

Mattingly comfortable with Harang's debut

PHOENIX -- Manager Don Mattingly dismissed a shaky first inning in starting pitcher Aaron Harang's Dodgers debut on Wednesday against the A's.

"He was fine for me," Mattingly said of Harang, who allowed four consecutive hits and two runs in the first inning, but retired the next four batters he faced in two innings of work.

"To me, veteran guys are going to get hit a bit in Spring Training. As camp goes on, they get stronger. Older guys early [in camp], I don't worry about. He knows what he has to do and I don't worry too much about the results, as long as he's feeling good. He was throwing strikes, and I trust he knows what he's doing."

Harang's start came on the heels of Ted Lilly's five-run start on Tuesday.

Signed to a two-year, $12 million, free-agent contract, Harang is slotted in as the Dodgers' fourth starter. He said he felt fine, with no problems from the foot bruise he believes was caused by new orthotics.

"Physically, I felt fine," Harang said. "One of those days, I was sharp in the 'pen, but it seemed like everything stayed on the middle of the plate. I was missing my spots. But if you go back over my track record, the first couple of spring starts, I'm just trying to get the feel of game speed."

Harang felt well enough to throw an additional 15 pitches on the side after he was removed from the game.

Withrow's debut on 40-man roster eventful

PHOENIX, Ariz. -- Chris Withrow's first outing on the Dodgers' Major League roster on Wednesday was an eventful one.

As he has most of his Minor League career, the former first-round Draft pick showed both flashes of brilliance and wildness in his two innings. Withrow was charged with one run on one hit, but walked two, hit a batter and had a wild pitch.

Withrow walked the first batter he faced, bringing catcher A.J. Ellis to the mound.

"A.J. just said to slow down and get ground balls, and not let it get to me," said Withrow, who retired the next three batters on grounders.

Withrow said he continues to work on the transition from being an overpowering high school thrower to a professional pitcher. He has 395 strikeouts in 385 Minor League innings, but he also has 211 walks. The Dodgers believe he made enough progress to add him to the 40-man roster over the winter.

"In high school, I just went for the strikeouts," Withrow said. "Now, it's more about letting the defense work for you."

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.