Young, Skaggs join Angels' crowded DL

July 4th, 2018

SEATTLE -- The Angels' injuries continued to mount Wednesday, as left-hander and outfielder Chris Young were placed on the disabled list ahead of the club's Fourth of July matinee against the Mariners.
Skaggs, who was scheduled to pitch Thursday's series finale at Safeco Field, was shelved with a right adductor strain, while Young was sidelined with a left hamstring strain that he suffered during the Angels' 4-1 loss Tuesday. Rookie will start against the Mariners on Thursday in place of Skaggs.
Losing Skaggs is significant for the Angels, who now have an MLB-high 14 players on the disabled list. No other team currently has more than nine. Skaggs has been the club's best starter this season, logging a 2.64 ERA over a team-best 92 innings this season.
Skaggs, 26, missed a start last month because of right hamstring tightness, though he managed to avoid the disabled list at the time. Skaggs said he felt a recurrence of the injury during his last outing against the Orioles on Sunday, when he departed after throwing a season-low 79 pitches over five innings.
"I felt it covering first base in Baltimore, and I thought it'd be all right," Skaggs said. "Clearly, it's still lingering. I don't think it's very serious. ... I took a few days off last time and it felt great, but I want to take a few more so I can really get on top of this before the All-Star break."
Skaggs said he hopes to only miss one start with the injury and return to pitch against the Mariners in next week's series in Anaheim.
Skaggs is the 10th Angels pitcher to land on the disabled list, joining , JC Ramirez, Nick Tropeano, Jim Johnson, , , , and .
The Angels recalled outfielder and right-hander from Triple-A Salt Lake to replace Young and Skaggs on their roster. They also optioned utility man to clear a spot for right-hander , who was activated off the disabled list and started against the Mariners on Wednesday.
Lineup shuffle
The Angels, who entered Wednesday having scored only 32 runs over their previous 10 games, moved up to the No. 2 spot ahead of , and . It marked the first time Pujols has started a game batting lower than fourth since 2001, his rookie season with the Cardinals.
"Our lineup has a chance to get deeper right now with Shohei [Ohtani] in it," manager Mike Scioscia said. "Every inning, you really need to pressure other teams. Hopefully we can start to get to that. Just getting some guys on base in front of Mike and helping him to get some of those opportunities is important, and then it'll feed into Justin and Albert. Albert is doing a great job with guys in scoring position. All that hopefully will make us a little more productive."
Asked if he had to have a conversation with Pujols prior to dropping him in the lineup, Scioscia said, "We've talked to all the guys. They're on board with whatever we think is going to help to make us more productive. He's got the same grouping in front of him, so he's going to get the same RBI opportunities."
Pujols, 38, entered Wednesday batting .247 with a .688 OPS, 12 home runs and 45 RBIs in 78 games for the Angels this season, though he has been one of the club's top run producers, hitting .318 with an .816 OPS with runners in scoring position.