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Joel Pineiro takes mound for Angels in familiar surroundings

August 29, 2011 |  6:31 pm

Joel Pineiro started his big-league career with the Mariners and he still has friends in Seattle. But there's little love lost when the right-hander takes the mound against his former team.

Pineiro had won three consecutive starts against the Mariners before Monday's game. And with 34 wins in his career at Safeco Field, he has won there nearly three times as often as he has at any other park.

"There's some ballparks the mound -- whether it's the visual, whether it's  just the dimensions, the infield grass -- there are things that affect the pitcher's comfort level," Angels Manager Mike Scioscia said. "Some guys sometimes struggle with a ballpark until they slay that dragon; go in there and get that one good start and all of sudden they say, 'Hey, I can do this.' And they gain confidence.

"There are some guys who can actually feel at home in certain parks. There is a comfort level that develops. The good pitchers that are going to be around a long time and pitch well eventually get that comfort level in any park they are in, to varying degrees."

What Pineiro is not familiar with, however, is pitching on long rest. Because the Angels had two off-days last week then juggled their rotation to start Ervin Santana and Jered Weaver on three days' rest in Texas, Pineiro hasn't pitched since Aug. 20. He's 9-14 with a 5.05 ERA in 32 starts on six or more days of rest. In his last start on long rest, following the All-Star break in Oakland, Pineiro was rocked for eight runs -- seven earned -- in a third of an inning.

The lineups


3B -- Maicer Izturis

2B -- Howie Kendrick

DH -- Bobby Abreu

RF-- Torii Hunter

1B -- Mark Trumbo

LF -- Vernon Wells

SS -- Erick Aybar

CF -- Peter Bourjos

C -- Hank Conger

P -- Joel Pineiro

Seattle Mariners

RF -- Ichiro Suzuki

CF -- Franklin Gutierrez

2B -- Dustin Ackley

1B -- Mike Carp

C -- Miguel Olivo

DH -- Adam Kennedy

LF -- Casper Wells

3B -- Kyle Seager

SS -- Brendan Ryan

P -- Blake Beavan


Rangers push Angels a bit further back

Vernon Wells has been catalyst in Angels' turnaround

Angels' Russell Branyan cuts it too close

-- Kevin Baxter reporting from Seattle

 Photo: Angels starter Joel Pineiro. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press