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Angels hope fast start puts pressure on Rangers

September 18, 2011 |  9:01 am


The Angels' game in Baltimore will probably be entering the fourth inning Sunday before the team they're chasing in the American League West, the Texas Rangers, start their contest with the Mariners three time zones away.

So if the Angels get off to a quick start against the Orioles they'll be hoping the Rangers, scoreboard-watching in Seattle, will notice.

"You put some pressure on them," the Angels' Bobby Abreu said. "That just makes them look up, 'Hey we have to win today. If we lose, it’s going to be another game.' For us, it’s good right now that we play [earlier]. If we win you put pressure on those guys."

It hasn't worked so far this weekend with the Angels losing their first two games in Baltimore. They've lost four of their last six overall, falling 4 1/2 games behind the Rangers with 11 games to play.

And desperate times call for desperate measures, which is one reason the Angels are starting right-hander Jered Weaver (pictured above) on three days' rest Sunday. Weaver has pitched on short rest just one other time in his career and it didn't go well with the Rangers reaching him for seven runs in six-plus innings. But by shaking up the rotation, Angel Manager Mike Scioscia can start Weaver three more times while the Angels Big Three of Weaver, Dan Haren and Ervin Santana will combine to pitch seven of the final 11 games.

Scioscia said Sunday he was not considering using Haren and Santana on short rest down the stretch.

The lineups:


SS -- Erick Aybar

2B -- Howie Kendrick

DH -- Bobby Abreu

RF -- Torii Hunter

1B -- Mark Trumbo

3B -- Alberto Callaspo

LF -- Vernon Wells

CF -- Peter Bourjos

C -- Jeff Mathis

P -- Jered Weaver

Baltimore Orioles

CF -- Matt Angle

SS -- J.J. Hardy

RF -- Nick Markakis

DH -- Vladimir Guerrero

1B -- Chris Davis

3B -- Josh Bell

2B -- Robert Andino

LF -- Kyle Hudson

C -- Craig Tatum

P -- Alfredo Simon

-- Kevin Baxter in Baltimore


Ervin Santana roughed up early in 6-2 loss to Orioles

Jered Weaver to start again on three days' rest

Nick Adenhart's legacy lives on in Baltimore

Photo credit: Chris Young / Associated Press