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Angels place Dan Haren on disabled list with back injury

By Matt Snyder | Baseball Writer

Dan Haren has been in a funk lately, and it's been largely attributed to a back injury. Thursday, the Angels placed him on the 15-day disabled list with lower back stiffness, the club's PR department announced. As a corresponding move, Kevin Jepsen has been recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake.

This is the first trip to the disabled list in Haren's 10-year major-league career. The three-time All-Star has made at least 33 starts every year since 2004.

In 2012, Haren is 6-8 with a 4.86 ERA, 1.41 WHIP and 86 strikeouts in 103 2/3 innings. He is on pace for the worst ERA, WHIP and hit rate of his career (excluding partial seasons). Things have gotten especially bad since his back issue started to flare up. In Haren's last five starts, he has an 8.67 ERA and 1.89 WHIP.

The good news here for the Angels is that, with the upcoming All-Star break, Haren may not have miss many starts before coming back fully recovered.

Jepsen, a 27-year-old right hander, has appeared in nine games for the Angels this season. He has a 10.29 ERA and 1.57 WHIP in seven innings.

Until Haren comes back, the Angels have Jered Weaver, Ervin Santana, C.J. Wilson and Garrett Richards in the rotation. The All-Star break will provide some relief before needing a fifth starter after the break, but they'll need a starter for Sunday, with Jerome Williams and now Haren on the shelf.

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