Friday, February 25, 2011
By Mark Saxon
* Saturday is the Cactus League opener and Kendry Morales won't be on the field. In fact, the Angels have no immediate plans to play Morales this spring.
Morales, who broke his left ankle last May, continues to run on a specialized treadmill in which 30 to 40 percent of his body weight is supported by a harness. Scioscia continues to say he is confident Morales will be ready by Opening Day. Scioscia said the goal is to get him 30 to 50 game at-bats, which means he'll need to be playing by about March 12.
"There's some work to do, but I think there's enough time to get through this process and have him ready for the start of the season," Scioscia said.
* I asked Jered Weaver if he was working on any new pitches this spring and he said, "Shhhhhh..."
Then he admitted he is working on his cut fastball, a pitch he tinkered with last spring but didn't throw consistently in the season. Last year, Weaver led the majors with 233 strikeouts but went just 13-12. It could particularly help him against left-handed batters, though they hit just .223 off him last year.
"These hitters are too good to throw what you threw at them last year and for them not to know what's coming," Weaver said. "This is something they haven't really seen before."
* Brandon Wood said his lower back is no longer bothering him, but he has yet to face live pitching this spring.
* The Angels may not use many regulars in the opener against the Dodgers. Vernon Wells said he isn't in the lineup and isn't sure when he'll start playing in games. He said he feels good physically.