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Forearm strain denies Skaggs' bid for no-no

Lefty exits after 4 2/3 innings; Morin relieves and allows hit to first batter

BALTIMORE -- Angels starter Tyler Skaggs exited Thursday's start against the Orioles after 4 2/3 hitless innings with what the team called a strain in his left forearm.

The 23-year-old left-hander was immediately examined by team doctors, who told him his ulnar collateral ligament was fine. By the time the Angels had pulled out a 1-0 victory in 13 innings at Camden Yards, Skaggs had regained full range of motion in his arm, an indication that "everything is going to be fine."

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But nothing is certain until Skaggs undergoes an MRI in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Friday.

"The funny thing was, I felt great today," said Skaggs, who watched as Mike Morin gave up the Orioles' first hit to the very next batter. "I felt like it was one of the better games I'd thrown all year. It's frustrating. It is what it is, though. We'll see how it goes tomorrow."

Skaggs felt his flexor tendon tighten up when he "over-pronated too much" on the changeup that struck out Orioles designated hitter Delmon Young to start the fifth and "couldn't really feel my fingers." He struck out the next batter, J.J. Hardy, "But my forearm was killing me." And when he walked the next guy, Steve Pearce, "I didn't really know where the ball was going."

Skaggs next pitch was an 89-mph fastball -- he had been sitting at 94 -- and it prompted him to call over manager Mike Scioscia and trainer Rick Smith to exit the game.

Skaggs, 5-5 with a 4.30 ERA, missed about three weeks with a mild strain in his right hamstring earlier this year, but had never experienced any arm issues until Thursday night.

Scioscia will wait on direction from the medical department before determining if Skaggs needs to go on the disabled list.

"Any pitcher that has something in their arm, whether it's their forearm or elbow or shoulder, there's no doubt you're concerned and you want to be cautious with it," Scioscia said. "I don't think we're overly concerned long range, but we're going to certainly monitor this right now."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez.

Los Angeles Angels, Mike Morin, Tyler Skaggs