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OC Register: Ricky Nolasco to start for Angels on opening day in Oakland


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I think this is a good move. Nolasco took the hill on opening day a few times in his career and he's the veteran of this rotation who finished the season nearly untouchable. 

This takes less pressure off Richards, Shoe and Skaggs IMO. I like it. 

Plus, I believe Chavez has a stellar record pitching at the Big A if I'm not mistaken. 

Good alignment headed into the season. 

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It's definitely a strange move, but I get it.  Richards is going to be limited this year and they aren't going to place him as the number 1 rotation guy. Shoe got hit in the head and they don't want to put any more pressure on him right now.  There is a lot of pressure that can come with opening day and Nolasco is a vet that has already done it.  Richards and Shoe both are still question marks to a degree.  Why put the extra pressure off telling them they are the ace before they have had the chance to put it together again on the field in meaningful games? Scioscia has made a LOT of moves I don't agree with throughout the years, but keeping the pressure off of two guys that are still working their way back isn't one of them.

 

 

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One thing I noticed, we have an extremely heavy schedule to start the year - over the first 46 days season, we have two off days - April 10th and May 1st, including 20 games in a row 4/11 thru 5/1. Barring any changes in order, that pencils Nolasco, Shoemaker, and Richards in for 9 starts until our 3rd off day May 18th. The fact that Petit, Norris, and Ramirez can go multiple innings really helps that pen.

Best I can tell, the match-ups for the first few series:
at Oakland (haven't decided on their #4 and #5 yet)
Nolasco vs. Graveman 
Shoemaker vs. Manaea
Richards vs. Cotton
Skaggs/Ramirez/TBA vs. Triggs/Hahn/Alcantara

Seattle (may flip Iwakuma/Paxton after first series)
Chavez vs. Gallardo
Nolasco vs. Hernandez
Shoemaker vs. Iwakuma or Paxton

Texas (could go with 4-man to start year)
Richards vs. Perez or Hamels
Skaggs/Ramirez/TBA vs. Griffin or Perez
Chavez vs. Griffin/Perez or Darvish or Griffin

at Kansas City
Nolasco vs. Duffy
Shoemaker vs. Kennedy
Richards vs. Hammel

at Houston (Collin McHugh could return and replace one of these)
Skaggs vs. Musgrove
Chavez vs. Fiers
Nolasco vs. Keuchel 
Shoemaker vs. Morton/McCullers
 

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Well I think ultimately who starts opening day on the mound for the Angels is Scioscia's decision and no one else's.  Now if the Angels traded for Chris Sale or signed some huge dollar free agent I could see the decision being made by Arte or Eppler.  This was a Scioscia decision with input from his staff, right or wrong.  

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1 hour ago, Stradling said:

Well I think ultimately who starts opening day on the mound for the Angels is Scioscia's decision and no one else's.  Now if the Angels traded for Chris Sale or signed some huge dollar free agent I could see the decision being made by Arte or Eppler.  This was a Scioscia decision with input from his staff, right or wrong.  

Wong 

Eppler is numero uno ... seriously, in game decisions are on Scioscia but roster and lineups are discussed with Eppler/Scioscia and the coaching staff. 

Money Ball!

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