It's Happening Again

John Lackey:

Ace John Lackey was shut down because of elbow tightness, an injury that could jeopardize his opening-day start against Oakland on April 6.

Ervin Santana:

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Ervin Santana -- like fellow Angels starters Kelvim Escobar and John Lackey -- can't be sure when he'll pitch a game with meaning again, but he doesn't appear concerned that his tender right elbow will keep him sidelined for more than a month of the 2009 season.
...
An All-Star in 2008 with a breakthrough season, Santana "is making progress," Scioscia said, "but I don't know how long it's going to be. Right now he's passing every test.

Kelvim Escobar:

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Kelvim Escobar emerged from Monday's minor league start -- his first game action since undergoing shoulder surgery last July -- with normal stiffness but no problems, and the veteran right-hander will start another minor league game on Saturday.

The Angels have mapped out a plan for Escobar that, barring setback, would stretch him out to the 100-pitch range by the third week of April and return him to the rotation by the end of April.

So we already knew that Escobar was out (and in fact well ahead of his projected recovery schedule), and as of right now Lackey's injury doesn't seem to be that serious. But even so, you're talking about arguably the Angels' top three starters all fighting their own bodies before the end of ST, and that's not how anyone wants to start the season. I'd suggest that this is only going to make a tight division tighter, except that after the way last year began, it's more likely that this propels the Angels to win 120 games and Ichiro to retire for some reason. You're a crafty minx, cosmos.

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