Angel reaction to center fielder Jim Edmonds' undergoing shoulder surgery that will sideline him for at least four months was one of ambivalence Tuesday. Or else the Angels are very good at biting their tongues.
No one actually criticized the enigmatic Edmonds for not having had the surgery last October--Edmonds said he wishes now he would have addressed the cartilage problem over the winter--but it seemed obvious that his teammates were not pleased.
"I have nothing to say," first baseman Darin Erstad said. "It's his life, he does what he wants to do. No one can make those decisions for him. . . . We're gonna have a great team, and we're going to be there at the end of the year, regardless of who's on the field."
Asked if it was any more frustrating knowing that Edmonds could have had surgery in October and been ready for this season, Manager Terry Collins said, "I can't answer that."
He couldn't answer or didn't want to?
Mo Vaughn, who has made a rapid comeback from a badly sprained left ankle and expects to return to the lineup when he is eligible to leave the disabled list Thursday, wasn't speaking specifically about Edmonds, but said:
"Some guys want to get better, some don't. Some play with pain, some don't. The bottom line is, you have an obligation to the guys who are paying you and to the guys who are playing to get better."
Vaughn took batting practice for the third time and ran for the first time. He said he still had a little limp while running but felt strong in his batting stance.
If Vaughn does play Thursday, it will likely be as the designated hitter, which actually might work well for the Angels, since Todd Greene is expecting to be suspended for charging the mound after getting hit by a pitch against Seattle on Sunday night.
"The biggest thing will be moving left to right," Vaughn said. "I don't want to limit the team defensively, and I don't want to look like a fool, either. As much as I don't like DHing, I can't play first base if I can't play like I know I'm capable of playing."
ANGELS' OMAR OLIVARES (2-0, 0.63 ERA)
BLUE JAYS' CHRIS CARPENTER (1-1, 1.10 ERA)
SkyDome, 4 PDT
* Update--The Blue Jays acquired third baseman Dave Hollins from the Angels for triple-A shortstop Thomas Perez in March. Call it a trade that hurt both teams. Hollins broke a bone in his left hand on a checked swing Saturday and is out for at least four weeks. Perez recently sprained a knee at Edmonton, and the Trappers signed veteran Dave Silvestri to replace him. . . . Tim Salmon was selected American League player of the week after hitting .481 with two home runs, four doubles, eight runs and 12 RBIs in seven games last week.