Escobar to make first start since '07

Updated: June 4, 2009, 2:19 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Los Angeles Angels pitcher Kelvim Escobar likely will make his first major league appearance in 20 months Saturday, when he's expected to be activated from the disabled list and start against the Detroit Tigers.

Kelvim Escobar

Escobar

Escobar, 33, is coming back from a shoulder injury and surgery that cost him all of 2008 and the first part of this season. He's also a pending free agent who, should he stay healthy, has the rest of the season to prove to the Angels or another suitor that he has regained his form. He went 18-7 with a 3.40 ERA in 2007, the last time he pitched in the majors.

"I'm sure a lot of people will have some doubts about how my arm is going to be," Escobar said, according to the Los Angeles Times. "I want to show people that I'm healthy. If I'm able to pitch four months with no problem, I'm sure a lot of people will see I'm back healthy and see how quick I was able to recover after surgery."

Escobar said he's more concerned with helping his team than earning a contract for next season. But he added he would like to remain with the Angels.

"Who wouldn't want to be here?" he said, according to the Times. "This is a great organization. It's a great place to play ball, with great fans. It's not about the money. I make enough. I'm happy. I just want to play."

Escobar went five innings in his last rehab start at Triple-A Salt Lake on Monday, giving up five runs -- four of them earned -- and striking out two. For his career, he is 101-90 with 59 saves and a 4.15 ERA in 11 major league seasons with the Angels and Toronto Blue Jays.