Pennington placed on DL; Ryan back with Angels

Righty Guerra selected from Triple-A, lefty Jones sent down

Pennington placed on DL; Ryan back with Angels

ANAHEIM -- Angels utility infielder Cliff Pennington was once again placed on the 15-day disabled list because of a strained left hamstring on Wednesday, four days after being activated off the DL with the same injury.

Brendan Ryan was called up to take Pennington's roster spot, one day after clearing waivers, and will resume his role as a utility infielder. Gregorio Petit, batting .228/.267/.281 in 18 games, will continue to get the majority of the playing time at shortstop.

The Angels also called up right-handed reliever Javy Guerra, who was designated for assignment on May 12 but ultimately cleared waivers and accepted an outright to Triple-A Salt Lake. Guerra took the spot of starting pitcher Chris Jones, who was initially called up from Triple-A to temporarily provide length out of the bullpen.

Pennington aggravated his left hamstring while beating out a bunt single in the seventh inning of Tuesday's 11-9 win over the Tigers, prompting him to come out of the game and eventually return to the shelf. The Angels have already used the Major League DL 12 times this season.

Escobar still out: Third baseman Yunel Escobar was out of the starting lineup for the third straight game Wednesday because of a sore left wrist, which he injured while attempting to field a short-hop in Sunday's game.

Escobar took batting practice early Wednesday afternoon, but didn't feel right. The Angels expect him back in the lineup on Friday in Pittsburgh. With Escobar out, second baseman Johnny Giavotella -- who finished May with a .348 batting average -- led off.

Pujols playing more first base: Angels manager Mike Scioscia had been pushing Albert Pujols to take a day off for the last several days, and the high-priced cleanup hitter finally relented on Wednesday, largely because he can couple it with Thursday's scheduled day off.

Pujols has been playing the field more frequently of late. He started at first base in five of the last eight games and will probably play the position three straight days when the Angels play a weekend Interleague series at PNC Park. Pujols said his right foot, which underwent surgery in November, is feeling "a lot better."

"It was by design to work him into [first base] slowly," Scioscia said of Pujols, who started 32 of the season's first 45 games at DH. "I think he's shown that he has the stamina to go out there and play first base more than maybe might have been anticipated from [Spring Training]. We'll take advantage of that when we have that presented to us."

Alden Gonzalez has covered the Angels for MLB.com since 2012. Follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and Facebook , and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.