Pineiro eyes return to Angels next weekend

Pineiro eyes return to Angels next weekend

Pineiro eyes return to Angels next weekend
ANAHEIM -- His right shoulder healed, Joel Pineiro's ache now is confined to his desire to get back in the Angels' rotation.

"I'm back to normal," Pineiro said, having thrown three innings and 45 pitches in an Arizona camp game on Wednesday in anticipation of a Minor League rehab start on Monday for Class A Inland Empire. "I'm looking to go five [innings] and 70 [pitches], which would be what I need to get to 85 or 90 [pitches] when I come back."

With an off-day on Thursday, Pineiro could be slotted in for a start on April 30 vs. the Rays in St. Petersburg.

"I'm back on my normal schedule," Pineiro said. "I've been watching these guys and I want to be part of it. These guys are pitching and playing great."

Pineiro, 32, was having an impressive spring -- 2-0, 3.46 ERA in 13 innings -- when he felt the back muscle near the lattisimus dorsi tighten on March 20 after throwing two innings against the Cubs in a Mesa, Ariz., spring camp game.

"I felt great the next day, but two days after that, I aggravated it throwing," he said. "I probably should have taken a little more time off to be sure. I've had some ups and downs with it, but it's normal now. I'm ready to go."

Lyle Spencer is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.