Chad Green said Monday’s scoreless outing was a step in the right direction. 

He faced seven batters and struck out five. The only other out was a grounder back to Green. Here’s his final strikeout, a 94-mph fastball on the inside corner against Rochester’s Adam Rosales:

A couple things that stood out from this start: Green’s new mechanics and his fastball.

First, the mechanics. The fine people at River Ave Blues noticed Green changed where he was holding his hands in the set position.

Green said he used to hold his hands higher, and when they dropped lower, it wasn’t necessarily something he noticed. It’s just what felt comfortable to him at the time. That’s something Green is stressing: Being comfortable on the mound. He said Monday night was the first time he’s felt comfortable in a while, and seemed genuinely pleased with the results he got. He’s been watching film of himself for a few weeks now, but he didn’t feel comfortable making significant changes until arriving here, since it’s not easy to make adjustments and try to get big league hitters out at the same time.

I was doing a little too much with my front side earlier. Trying to make up for some (thing), or just like pulling off too early. ” Green said about why he moved his hands up. “This is just kind of a way to keep me on line better. That’s kind of the biggest thing is just that my direction is a little better with my hands up there.”

As for the fastball, he threw it 22 times in his 34 pitches. Scoreboard readings: 95, 96, 96, 95, 95 (swinging), 96, 95, 96, 95, 95 (swinging), 95, 95, 94, 95, 95, 96 (swinging), 94, 97, 95, 95 (swinging), 95, 94. That’s an average of 95.18 mph, which would be a tick above what he was throwing in the majors this year. More importantly, though, was his command of the pitch. He worked it inside and outside, and dotted it at the top of the zone a few times, too. Green said he didn’t necessarily lose confidence in the pitch this year, but he wasn’t trusting it quite as much and, sometimes, was trying to be too perfect with it. As much as fans want him to work on his secondary pitches — which he did in his second inning of work, where eight of his 14 pitches were secondary offerings — if the pitch he threw 86 percent of the time last year is broken, not much else is going to go well.

Green was happy with the fastball Monday. Four of his five strikeouts came with the pitch.

“I think I kind of lost that a little bit,” Green said. “Just being able to attack guys with that pitch and obviously throwing the secondary stuff in there to get them off the fastball. That’s kind of, when I’m going good, that’s kind of what I do.”

As planned, Green will make his next open/start Friday in Syracuse. It’s a bit of a break for a reliever, but it’s probably safe to assume that there will be a mechanics-heavy bullpen in between.