SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Robbie Ross woke up with a familiar feeling in his left arm Thursday morning, that bit of extra soreness that comes a day after starting a game or throwing multiple innings.
It's something Ross didn't get to experience much as a lefty reliever for the Rangers last year, when he appeared in 58 games and threw 65 innings.
"It's that normal soreness," said Ross, who allowed two runs in three innings Wednesday against the White Sox. "It's that feeling that I'm going three innings now, so I feel good."
Ross progressed through the Minor Leagues primarily as a starter and has been thrust back into the role this spring in a competition for the club's vacant No. 5 starter role. He is competing with Randy Wells, Martin Perez, Justin Grimm and Kyle McClellan, among others.
"We're all working to get a job," said Ross, who is scheduled to pitch four innings his next time out. "I think the biggest thing is we're all out here working our tail off and enjoying it at the same time. You obviously get a little nervous when you think about how things are going to fall into place, but you've just got to enjoy it."
Ross worked two solid innings before faltering in his third, when he hit Adam Dunn and then allowed a home run to Paul Konerko. But Ross said the struggles that inning weren't tied at all to the length he pitched. He said he just didn't make the right pitches to Konerko.
Manager Ron Washington gave Chicago's veteran first baseman all the credit.
"Other than that, I thought Robbie did a great job out there," Washington said. "He moved the ball around, in and out, used his breaking ball and changeup, and I thought he did a good job."