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Richards nearly ready for rehab assignment

Right-hander out since early April with biceps nerve injury
MLB.com @mi_guardado

ANAHEIM -- After throwing three innings in a simulated game in Arizona on Friday, Angels right-hander Garrett Richards could soon be ready to pitch in Minor League games, according to manager Mike Scioscia.

The Angels will wait to see how Richards comes out of his throwing session before determining the next step of his rehab, but Scioscia said his next outing "could very easily" be at Triple-A Salt Lake.

ANAHEIM -- After throwing three innings in a simulated game in Arizona on Friday, Angels right-hander Garrett Richards could soon be ready to pitch in Minor League games, according to manager Mike Scioscia.

The Angels will wait to see how Richards comes out of his throwing session before determining the next step of his rehab, but Scioscia said his next outing "could very easily" be at Triple-A Salt Lake.

Richards has been out since the third game of the season with an irritated nerve in his right biceps, but the 29-year-old remains on track for a September return and could help bolster the Angels' rotation as they make a playoff push down the stretch.

Wild Card standings

Scioscia declined to estimate how many rehab starts Richards would need before being activated from the 60-day disabled list. The Angels have said they are open to bringing Richards up once he's stretched out to around 60 pitches, since the expanded rosters in September will allow them to carry more relievers.

"I don't really want to venture any guess because there's so many variables that come into it," Scioscia said. "I think with rehabs, you come to find out everything is in pencil, but you definitely want to chart a course of what's best for the player, and that's what we'll look at. All the numbers coming out of today were terrific, but there's no doubt we need to have Garrett out there and continue to build stamina and show that he's healthy."

Worth noting

• Infielder Yunel Escobar (right oblique strain) fielded grounders again on Friday and is inching closer to a rehab assignment.

• The Angels called up right-hander Mike Morin from Triple-A and optioned infielder Jefry Marte. Marte had been starting exclusively against left-handers, and the Angels are slated to face three righties this weekend. Morin has logged a 6.91 ERA over 14 1/3 innings in the Majors this season, but he's pitched well at Salt Lake, recording a 2.91 ERA over 34 innings. He can make multi-inning appearances out of the Angels' bullpen.

• The Angels claimed right-hander Blake Wood off waivers from the Reds. Wood, 32, posted a 5.65 ERA over 57 1/3 innings with Cincinnati before being designated for assignment on Wednesday. To clear a spot on the 40-man roster, the Angels transferred right-hander Matt Shoemaker to the 60-day disabled list.

Mike Trout will be one of three new members to the Arizona Fall League Hall of Fame, joining fellow 2017 inductees Max Scherzer and David Wright. The Arizona Fall League created its Hall of Fame to honor the top Major League players and managers who honed their skills in the AFL.

Maria Guardado covers the Angels for MLB.com.

Los Angeles Angels, Garrett Richards