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Angels set starting rotation — for Cactus League, at least

Angels set starting rotation — for Cactus League, at least
Angels pitcher Jered Weaver warms up during a spring training practice session on Feb. 20. (Rick Scuteri / Associated Press)

TEMPE, Ariz. — The Angels' Cactus League opener has a bit of an opening day feel about it.

Jered Weaver, the ace, is the starting pitcher. The Angels are fielding their everyday lineup, minus the injured Josh Hamilton.

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The starting rotation appears set, at least for now. After Weaver starts Friday, C.J. Wilson is set to start on Saturday, followed by Hector Santiago on Sunday, Garrett Richards on Monday and Tyler Skaggs on Tuesday.

Joe Blanton, the sixth starter for now, will probably start on one of the three days the Angels have split-squad games and pitch in the middle innings on other days. If the Angels stick with their projected starting five -- rather than make a change because of injury or ineffectiveness -- Blanton might not make the team.

Angels closer Ernesto Frieri, who was scheduled to pitch one inning Friday, was excused because his wife is due to give birth to the couple's second child. Frieri tweeted a picture of himself, dressed in scrubs, with this caption: "I'm ready to receive my new baby."

Angels Manager Mike Scioscia said he hoped to get the starting position players two at-bats each, or four or five innings in the field, on Friday.

The game, against the Chicago Cubs, will be televised on Fox Sports West at noon PT.

The Angels lineup: Kole Calhoun, rf; Mike Trout, cf; Albert Pujols, 1b; David Freese, 3b; Howie Kendrick, 2b; Raul Ibanez, dh; Chris Iannetta, c; Erick Aybar, ss; J.B. Shuck, lf; Weaver, p.

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