Skaggs' scoreless return to hill 'one to build off'

Angels lefty feeling strong after missing last start with shoulder weakness

Skaggs' scoreless return to hill 'one to build off'

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Back on the mound for the first time since the Angels decided to skip a start to address some weakness in his shoulder, Tyler Skaggs was healthy and strong in his return to action during Wednesday's 7-4 loss to the Giants.

Skaggs didn't allow a base hit in his two shutout innings, walking a pair while striking out two in his first outing since March 4, a rough outing that -- along with any shoulder concerns -- is in the past, as far as Skaggs is concerned.

"I've been feeling good for a little while now, and my shoulder felt strong, my outing was good," the left-hander said. "It's one to build off, and I'm looking forward to the next one."

Skaggs started off Wednesday's assignment with a walk of Denard Span, attributing it to "first-inning jitters," but wound up keeping the Giants in check from there. He finished off his outing with a strikeout of Giants pitcher (and solid hitter, who was batting eighth) Madison Bumgarner, whose bat flew out of his hands and into the stands.

Bumgarner's bat finds the stands

"I think once he got his feet on the ground after the first couple of hitters, his stuff looked good," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "His curveball was terrific, and he had good life on his fastball, so it was a good workout for him."

Said Skaggs: "Fastball-curveball is my bread and butter, so once I get that locked in, get the fastball command locked in, it's going to be a fun season."

Skaggs threw 37 pitches Wednesday, a figure that's behind most starters at this point. Scioscia said he'll move up to three innings and 45-50 pitches in his next outing, which will come in a Minor League game because his day to pitch will fall on the Angels' off-day next Monday.

John Schlegel is a national reporter for MLB.com. You can follow him on Twitter @JohnSchlegelMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.