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BASEBALL / DAILY REPORT : ANGELS : Rodgers Knows How to Handle Frey

April 20, 1992|HELENE ELLIOTT

Steve Frey says there are good points and bad points to his long acquaintance with Angel Manager Buck Rodgers.

The biggest benefit for Frey was that when the Angels needed a left-handed short reliever, Rodgers remembered him from their days in Montreal and recommended the Angels purchase his contract from the Expos. The drawback is that Rodgers knows his foibles and won't let him get away with anything.

After Frey threw 26 pitches during a wild ninth inning Saturday, Rodgers told him to stop fooling around because he was the last available pitcher and couldn't waste any pitches. Frey buckled down during the 10th inning, and earned credit for the Angels' 5-3 victory.

"I was trying to make too good pitches instead of going at them," Frey said. "It's happened in the past and Buck has picked it up. He won't hesitate to tell me, and that's fine. I want somebody to remind me if he sees I'm not being aggressive."

Frey, promoted from triple-A Edmonton on April 11 when Scott Bailes was put on the disabled list, has helped the bullpen through a rough stretch by pitching 4 2/3 scoreless innings.

Third base coach John Wathan barely missed being beaned during batting practice when Lee Stevens flipped what he thought was a light switch and instead turned on the pitching machine. "That would have been the supreme insult, to get fired in this town and then get hit in the back of the head," Wathan said.

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