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Langston Will Miss a Turn Despite Feeling 'Great'

May 16, 1997|JOHN WEYLER

Mark Langston said his elbow felt "great" Thursday, but Manager Terry Collins has decided to take a play-it-safe approach and move Langston's next scheduled start from Sunday to Monday.

Knuckleballer Dennis Springer, who earned the victory Wednesday night against Baltimore with 5 1/3 scoreless innings, will start Sunday's game and Shigetoshi Hasegawa--who started Wednesday and gave up eight hits and five runs in three innings--will move to the bullpen.

Langston was out two weeks because of an inflamed left elbow before returning Tuesday night when he gave up only six hits and two earned runs in six innings against Chicago. He said his elbow was "pretty stiff [Wednesday], but that's to be expected when you haven't pitched in that long."

Collins talked to Langston Thursday but decided it was prudent to move his next start.

"I told him I know he doesn't like the extra day off, but I was going to hold him back anyway," Collins said. "He was fine with it. This way, the elbow gets a little more time to recover before he throws on the sideline [today]."

Collins said Springer's promotion to the rotation and Hasegawa's demotion to the bullpen were only temporary.

"Shige just didn't have his command," Collins said, "and right now, Dennis really has the knuckleball working."


Third baseman Dave Hollins got the evening off Thursday, but apparently wasn't overjoyed with the respite.

"He has a really sore thumb and holes in the palms of both hands from sliding," Collins said. "He comes into the dugout and [the trainers] clean up his hands and put patches on so he can hit. Then they take them off so he can go back out in the field."

Collins informed Hollins of his decision after Wednesday night's game because he didn't want him to show up at the park thinking he was going to play and then find out he wasn't. "Dave gets his game face on about 9:30 in the morning," Collins said, smiling.

"He's played 10 games in a row and I think he's a little beat up, a little fatigued," Collins said. "This gives him a day to sit back and build his energy back up.

"Of course he insisted he was fine and should play, but I just said, "No, you're off."'


Left-hander Mike Holtz picked up his first major-league save Wednesday, but said it was no different than coming into the game in the seventh inning to face one batter and getting him out.

"It's a good feeling, the same as anytime you do your job," he said. "Consistency is what it's all about."

So far, Holtz has been remarkably consistent, allowing only one run and stranding all eight runners he has inherited in 18 appearances.



Opponent--Milwaukee Brewers, three games.

* Site--Anaheim Stadium.

* Tonight--7 p.m.

* TV--Fox Sports West, tonight and Sunday.

* Radio--KTZN (710).

* Records--Angels 18-19, Brewers 19-17

* Record vs. Brewers--0-3.




(0-3, 6.35 ERA)




(4-2, 4.38 ERA)

* Update--Finley has pitched well enough to win a couple of times this season, but his last outing--May 11 in Milwaukee--wasn't one of them. He gave up 10 hits and five runs and threw 104 pitches in only five innings of a 5-2 loss. The Brewers don't have a hitter or starting pitcher listed among the league leaders in any of the major statistical categories, but they're 9-3 in one-run games and closer Doug Jones is 3-0 with nine saves in nine save opportunities. Milwaukee, 14-6 at home, hasn't had much success on the road, where they have won only five times in 17 games. McDonald, the team leader in innings pitched (49 1/3), has struck out 34 and walked only 18.

* Saturday, 7 p.m.--Allen Watson (1-3, 5.98) vs. Jeff D'Amico (1-2, 5.29).

* Sunday, 1 p.m.--Dennis Springer (1-1, 6.14) vs. Jose Mercedes (1-0, 3.70).

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