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Matt Palmer hit hard in Angels' 6-6 tie against Colorado; Joel Pineiro injured in triple-A game

March 20, 2011 |  4:48 pm

Palmer-angels_300 It was a rough day on the mound for a pair of Angels starting pitchers on Sunday, both at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale, Ariz., and in Mesa, the spring-training home of the Chicago Cubs.

Matt Palmer, slowed for much of March by bronchitis, was rocked for six runs and 10 hits in four innings of the Angels' 6-6, 10-inning exhibition tie against the Colorado Rockies at Salt River Fields. Palmer gave up seven straight hits, including Troy Tulowitzki's three-run homer, in the first inning, and Tulowitzki hit a solo homer off Palmer in the third.

Over in Mesa, Joel Pineiro left a triple-A game against the Cubs after two innings and 35 pitches because of tightness in his back, under his right shoulder blade. Pineiro was scheduled to throw six innings and about 90 pitches.

"I heard a little bit of stiffness," said Manager Mike Scioscia, who was ejected from the game against the Rockies for arguing a third-inning call. "He's stretched out enough where it might not impact him starting the season with us, but he might start his season a little later."

The Angels open the season March 31 in Kansas City, and they have a day off after four games against the Royals. The Angels could skip the fifth spot in their first turn of the rotation, and Pineiro's first start could be pushed back to about April 11.

Torii Hunter had a big day at the plate against the Rockies, belting his third homer of the spring, a double and a single. Vernon Wells had a run-scoring double and a single, and Howie Kendrick, after smoking two line drives for outs in his first two at-bats, hit a run-scoring triple to right in the fifth.

Closer Fernando Rodney allowed one hit in a scoreless fifth inning, and left-hander Hisanori Takahashi added a scoreless seventh and eighth, recording three outs after yielding a double to open the seventh. Takahashi has not allowed a run in nine innings this spring. Jordan Walden threw a scoreless eighth.

-- Mike DiGiovanna in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Photo: Matt Palmer checks for the sign during an outing earlier this spring training. Credit: Jake Roth / US Presswire