GLENDALE, Ariz. -- A 14-win rookie season for Hyun-Jin Ryu pretty much put a rough Spring Training debut in the rearview mirror, but not for Ryu.
The left-hander remembered huffing and puffing his way through early conditioning drills and wasn't going there again.
So a fitter Ryu took the field for Sunday's first workout. Two weeks ago, Ryu said he was "underprepared" last year after a harried contract negotiation, vowing he would be in better shape this time around.
"All kidding aside," Ryu said Sunday, "last year was trying with the contract, and I didn't' get a head start. I've had more time to prepare this year."
Ryu, listed at 255 pounds by the team, said he's "significantly lighter compared to last year," but "only I know" how much lighter.
"Absolutely, working hard is very contagious," he said. "My teammates definitely push me. At the end of the day, you have to do it yourself. I just try to be in the best shape I can. I'm an athlete; it's my job to be in the best condition."
Ryu said he's more comfortable this spring, having gone through a Major League training camp.
"I know the faces, I have close friends here," he said. "The first day doesn't feel like the first day like last year, when I didn't know anybody."
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.