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Shoemaker feeling 'really good,' eager to throw

Angels right-hander currently on DL with right forearm strain
MLB.com

ANAHEIM -- Angels right-hander Matt Shoemaker, who made one start before going on the disabled list April 3, has been making progress on the right forearm strain that has kept him sidelined.

"The last four, five days it's just very noticeably gotten better," Shoemaker said before Tuesday's opener against the Red Sox at Angel Stadium. "The nerve irritation, the scar-tissue stuff affecting the nerve, whatever I was feeling, that's finally calming down, and I'm starting to feel really good."

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ANAHEIM -- Angels right-hander Matt Shoemaker, who made one start before going on the disabled list April 3, has been making progress on the right forearm strain that has kept him sidelined.

"The last four, five days it's just very noticeably gotten better," Shoemaker said before Tuesday's opener against the Red Sox at Angel Stadium. "The nerve irritation, the scar-tissue stuff affecting the nerve, whatever I was feeling, that's finally calming down, and I'm starting to feel really good."

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Shoemaker said he is eager to begin a throwing program, but he still has not been cleared to do so. There remains no timetable for his return, according to manager Mike Scioscia.

Shoemaker, 31, missed more than half of the 2017 season after undergoing surgery to release the compressed radial nerve in his right forearm. He has said that his current injury feels similar to the one that he sustained last year.

Shoemaker was expected to be a regular member of the Angels' projected six-man rotation this season, but he has not pitched since his season debut on March 31, when he allowed three runs in 5 2/3 innings in a win over the A's.

Shoemaker's injury, coupled with the loss of JC Ramirez to season-ending Tommy John surgery, forced the Angels to use nine starters through their first 15 games of the season.

The Angels are currently carrying five starters on their 25-man roster -- Garrett Richards, Tyler Skaggs, Shohei Ohtani, Nick Tropeano and Andrew Heaney -- though they are expecting to shift to a six-man rotation within the next week. They will need another starter by Sunday, at the latest, with Jaime Barria and Parker Bridwell the most likely candidates to take the role.

Worth noting
• Ramirez, who was diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow last week, was scheduled to undergo Tommy John surgery Tuesday. The procedure was expected to be performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles.

• Right-hander Griffin Canning, a second-round Draft pick out of UCLA in 2017, has been promoted to Double-A Mobile after logging 8 2/3 scoreless innings over his first two starts with Class A Advanced Inland Empire this season. Canning, 21, is the Angels' No. 8 prospect, per MLB Pipeline.

Avery Yang is a reporter for MLB.com.

Los Angeles Angels, Matt Shoemaker