BALTIMORE — Mike Trout may have been wearing the road grays of the Angels on Tuesday at Oriole Park, but he definitely had a home-field advantage.
Trout grew up in Millville, N.J., and with this week's two-game series marking the Angels' only visit to Baltimore this season, more than 1,000 of the town's residents made the two-hour drive down Interstate 95 to see him play.
"They've been there since day one," said Trout, who received a loud ovation when the starting lineups were announced. "They were going to my high school games and stuff. It will be good to see their faces again."
Trout, who doubled and scored the Angels' first run Tuesday, did not take the team's charter flight from Southern California to Baltimore, detouring instead to New Jersey, where he spent Monday with family and friends.
Angels Manager Mike Scioscia, who made similar visits to his boyhood home outside Philadelphia when he was a young player with the Dodgers, cautioned that the adulation and pride of the hometown fans can be a double-edged sword.
"It was special in a lot of ways. And in some ways it was great when you got out of town because … you try to be everything to everyone," said Scioscia who, like Trout, was a first-round draft pick from high school. "You're seeing your friends, your family, people after games are coming over and visiting. It's just a great feeling when you get a chance to get back home and play.
"But it's also nice when you're out of town, just to kind of exhale. It is draining."
Peter the Great
Home runs have been rare in Peter Bourjos' short major league career. And lately, so has playing time.
But you have to give Bourjos this: He's making the most of his chances. Starting in consecutive games for only the second time this month, Bourjos homered in consecutive games for only the second time in his career Tuesday.
"I'm going up there trying to keep it simple: look for a pitch that I can hit and not try to do too much with it," said Bourjos, who has hit safely in 11 of the last 12 games he has started. "That's probably what I should be doing all the time, if I was playing every day. [I'm] trying to carry that out there to the game whenever I can."
Right-hander Jerome Williams, who was put on the disabled list last week after being hospitalized briefly because of respiratory issues, threw 51 pitches in a three-inning simulated game. If there are no further complications, Scioscia said the pitcher could be sent out on a minor league rehabilitation assignment in the next couple of days.