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Angels players excited to add Greinke to rotation

Angels players excited to add Greinke to rotation

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Angels players excited to add Greinke to rotation
ANAHEIM -- At around 4:30 p.m., there was a bit of commotion in the clubhouse and Jered Weaver had a sense something was up.

He saw Angels' infielder Jean Segura head into the coach's office and knew things were happening.

And when the Angels finally found out that they had acquired starter Zack Greinke from the Brewers in exchange for Segura and two Double-A pitchers, the team was buzzing before taking the field against the Rays on Friday.

"We got word that it was Greinke and were very excited," Weaver said. "The guy's obviously a proven Cy Young Award-winner. He brings a lot to the table. He wants to take the ball every fifth day and wants to win. He's obviously a guy you've seen from afar, because he's obviously been in different divisions, but it'll be nice to bring him in here and have him. There's no doubt about it."

Greinke, 28, is 9-3 with a 3.44 ERA in 21 starts this season, posting an 8.9 strikeout-per-nine innings ratio in 123 innings. The 2009 American League Cy Young Award winner with the Royals has averaged 13 wins and a 3.38 ERA over the last five years.

He's a pitcher that the Angels' starters are obviously familiar with. Dan Haren knows what kind of stuff the right-hander has, and he's excited that a player of his caliber is joining what, at one time before Friday, was a rotation in a bit of a flux.

"It really hasn't sunk in yet," Haren said. "I mean, he's a guy I've admired for a while. He's the definition of electric stuff, the opposite of me. My game is more command, and his game is more command and having a wide arsenal of pitches."

After Haren, who has been sharp in his two starts since his return from the disabled list, the Angels' rotation has been shaky at best. Ervin Santana's ERA rose to 6.00 in his last start -- a 1 1/3-inning, six-run outing -- and has allowed four runs or more in 11 of his 19 starts this season.

The fifth spot has been a tossup between Jerome Williams and Garrett Richards, both of whom haven't necessarily been a portrait of consistency lately.

Weaver wasn't surprised that general manager Jerry Dipoto made the move on Friday. Pitchers were struggling and it was only a matter of time, the righty said.

In his first offseason as GM, Dipoto has signed arguably the best first baseman in the game in Albert Pujols and the best free agent starter available after the 2011 season, in C.J. Wilson.

Now in July, he has brought in another ace to make up one of the best pitching staffs in baseball, one outfielder Torii Hunter can't wait to play behind for the rest of the season.

"I know how he pitches. He's a bulldog," Hunter said. "He has five pitches and can throw from 92-99 [mph]. If he gets [angry], he's throwing 100. This guy's very special. He's one of the elite pitchers in the game, and I'm excited."

Joe McIntyre is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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