Game 151: Angels (82-69) @ Orioles (62-88), 1:35pm

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Like a parachute after a high altitude jump, the Sunday forfeit lineup has been deployed. It's also possible that this is a "We're going to throw at your guys because your starter yesterday was a punk, but good luck retaliating against these scrubs" lineup. Although I question in either case why, if you're going that far, J.J. Hardy is playing instead of, say, Pedro Florimon. On the other hand, who really cares? The Ravens and Redskins are starting their respective games at 1 o'clock, nobody's gonna be watching this mess.

Alfredo Simon is the Orioles starter. Insert your own off-color joke here about the Sauce taking aim at people. This may not happen, and I am usually not the sort to root for it to happen, but if ever there was a time where you have to protect your players and send a message to the other team that you can't go blasting dudes in the head, it is today. Simon has alternated between pitching well and sucking with no rhyme or reason to it. Presently, he's sporting a 4.67 ERA and he's coming off a strong outing against Tampa Bay. The Angels are helping him out by sending him a lineup that has three sub-.300 OBP players.

Mark Reynolds isn't in today's lineup, but he may not have been anyway. The Sun reports that he was sent for a CT scan and that's why he was removed early last night, and that Reynolds himself says there is a "sore area where the ball struck him, but (Reynolds) is having no cognitive problems." I think that's as good as news gets for this kind of thing.

Pitching for LAAAOCCAUSAESMWU is Jered Weaver. People mention his name in the same sentence as the AL Cy Young award. There is a good reason for that. He's thrown 221.1 IP with a 1.02 WHIP and a 2.40 ERA in that time. He has 188 strikeouts and only 55 walks. That's fewer walks than Jake Arrieta in nearly twice as many innings. Weaver is the biggest reason why the Angels entered this series with even slim playoff hopes. The last two nights the Orioles have beaten two of the three best Angels starters, but this afternoon they will face the best with a C-team lineup of their own.

The biggest question for Weaver may be whether he can end his performance today with 200 strikeouts on the season. If he pitches deep enough into the game, he can probably get a quarter of the gap closed solely thanks to Chris Davis.

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