Jered Weaver could rejoin the Angels' rotation next week, according… (Brandon Wade / Getty Images )
Jered Weaver could rejoin the Angels' starting rotation next week, Manager Mike Scioscia said Tuesday.
Weaver is set to pitch in an extended spring training game Wednesday in Arizona, the same day Joe Blanton is scheduled to start for the Angels. It is possible Weaver could replace Blanton when that turn comes up again Monday, against the Dodgers.
Weaver, the Angels' ace, has not pitched since April 7 because of a fractured left elbow. Blanton is 0-7 with a 6.62 earned-run average, the highest of any starter in the American League. Blanton also has given up the most hits of any pitcher in the major leagues.
Blanton is in the first year of a two-year, $15-million contract. With Jerome Williams now in the rotation, the Angels could use Blanton as a long reliever.
The Angels have targeted Weaver for five innings and 75 pitches in his extended spring appearance Wednesday. If all goes well, Scioscia said, the Angels could let Weaver take his next step -- six innings and 90 pitches -- in a major league start.
The Angels could be getting additional pitching reinforcements soon. Relievers Kevin Jepsen and Ryan Madson are set to report to triple-A Salt Lake on Wednesday for rehabilitation assignments. Jepsen is expected to rejoin the Angels after pitching for Salt Lake on Wednesday and Friday; Madson's timetable is uncertain.
Also, starter Tommy Hanson has reported to the Angels' Arizona complex to resume workouts. Hanson, who has not pitched since May 4 as he deals with the death of his stepbrother, would "most likely not" be ready to take his next scheduled turn Saturday, Scioscia said.
Among the Angels' options: Billy Buckner, who would become the 21st pitcher the club has used this season.
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