03/29/08 10:35 PM ET
Moseley to start Halos' home opener
Right-hander filling in rotation for injured Lackey, Escobar
By Richie Brand / Special to MLB.com
Manager Mike Scioscia on Saturday officially named Moseley the team's starter for the home opener against the Texas Rangers.
"Dustin has thrown the ball very well," said Scioscia. "We got his pitch count where we wanted it to be, and we'll see him in the home opener on Friday."
In starting Friday's game, Moseley will be filling a role he occupied for much of 2007 -- starting pitcher for a team whose other starters have seen their fair share of time on the disabled list.
With ace John Lackey (strained right triceps) on the shelf until perhaps May and starter Kelvim Escobar battling a labrum tear in his right shoulder that could threaten his career, Moseley is certainly understanding of his role.
"I'm excited," said the right-hander. "Hopefully, I'll jump in and fill the void with Eskie and Lackey out.
Moseley won four games last year for the Angels while shifting back and forth between the bullpen and the rotation. He made eight starts, going 1-1 with a 4.20 ERA as a member of the rotation.
Moseley's last regular-season appearance was a start on Sept. 25 at Texas. He pitched four innings of shutout ball in that appearance and underwent surgery on Oct. 23 to alleviate pressure on the ulnar nerve in his right elbow.
Moseley has recovered nicely to pitch well this spring, with a 3.00 ERA over twelve innings -- including three starts.
He pitched especially well in his last start, throwing five innings of shutout ball in a win over the Mariners last Sunday. Moseley allowed six hits with two strikeouts in that outing and believes it had a big impact on Scioscia's decision.
"That last game against Seattle definitely helped make us his mind a little bit," the pitcher said. "In a sense, I'll be doing the same thing as last year as far as filling in. I'm just going to go out and have fun with it."
Scioscia is confident in Moseley's ability, having seen his success in this role last year, and feels lucky to have him on the staff.
"Fortunately we have some depth in an area that is certainly stretched," said the manager. "Dustin has bounced back from his elbow surgery, and we feel we're going to have a chance to win regardless of who is out there."
Friday night at Angel Stadium, it will be Moseley, and he is comfortable knowing he will be in a familiar spot.
"I've started for a long time," said the pitcher. "It's just about establishing a routine and putting the team in a situation to win."
Richie Brand is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.