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Angels look within to reinforce pitching

ANAHEIM -- Right-hander Jered Weaver's fractured left elbow has put the Angels in a bit of a bind, but it apparently isn't bad enough to make general manager Jerry Dipoto feel the need to go outside the organization for pitching help.

Asked about his motivation to seek additional starting pitching with his ace on the disabled list, Dipoto said it's "no more or no less than any other day."

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"From a depth standpoint, we're not displeased with what we have in house," he added. "We're very happy with the arms we have. When you can take a guy like Garrett Richards and put him in a rotation, that's a fairly significant amount of talent that you're injecting in your starting rotation. And it will create other holes that we're going to make sure that we fill."

The Angels feel they have enough to cover for Weaver's absence over the next four to six weeks, his projected timeline. Richards will take his place in the rotation and at the same time leave a void in the bullpen, with Dane De La Rosa called up from Triple-A and Mark Lowe presumably gaining a more prominent role.

The Angels are lucky, at least, that Weaver's injury happened early enough in the season that Richards still has enough length to transition back to starting, which he did for most of spring. Long reliever Jerome Williams would've been the fallback option if Richards couldn't go, with Billy Buckner, Barry Enright and Matt Shoemaker the options in Triple-A.

"We'll do the best we can to fill the void on the staff, but you won't be able to replace Jered Weaver in the big picture," Dipoto said. "You try to put together a 12-man staff that can complement one another and help cover it. But there's a reason why Jered Weaver has pitched in All-Star Games and received Cy Young votes and garners attention as the ace of the staff. He is that. We don't have six guys capable of being Jered Weaver, but we have 12 guys capable of being good pitchers."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. Reporter Richard Justice contributed. AJ Cassavell contributed to this report. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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