Angels outfielder Peter Bourjos was forced out at second base on a game-ending… (Stephen Dunn / Getty Images )
Had Peter Bourjos stolen second base in the ninth inning Tuesday night, things might have turned out differently for the Angels, who had runners on first base and third base with none out when Kendrys Morales struck out and Howie Kendrick grounded into a double play to end a 6-5 loss to the Oakland Athletics.
But the speedy Bourjos never had the green light from Manager Mike Scioscia, and the combination of a deceptive left-hander in Jerry Blevins and Morales and Kendrick going to 1-and-2 counts made it difficult to put the steal sign on.
"We didn't get into a count that worked," Bourjos said. "The pitcher was probably reading me. When he went home, he could have easily thrown to first because his lift leg stayed pretty even, and he kind of hung there for a second."
The Angels scored twice in the ninth inning on singles by Torii Hunter and Albert Pujols, but their rally fell short when Morales, with the infield back, failed to put the ball in play and Kendrick grounded into his 23rd double play, second-most in the American League.
"It's all about the risk you want to take," Bourjos said. "More times than not, Howie gets the job done, and he smoked that ball right at the third baseman. If he hit it a little softer, I might have gotten in there and broken up the double play. It was tough luck."
Scioscia said he was "looking for an opportunity" to send Bourjos, but "we just didn't get a count to do it on."
Mess with Texas
The Angels will get their fill of Texas next season. The team's 2013 schedule was released Wednesday, and there are no trips combining Texas and new AL West member Houston. The Angels will make six stops in Texas to play the Rangers and Astros.
There are not really any extreme travel demands, but there are peculiar three-city trips to Seattle-Tampa Bay-Milwaukee in August and Toronto-Houston-Oakland in September. There is a day off between Seattle and Tampa Bay.
Of the team's 27 games in September, 20 will be against AL West teams, including four at Texas to close the season.
The Angels have informed professional scouts Brad Sloan and Willie Fraser that their contracts will not be renewed for 2013, continuing the transformation of the front office under first-year General Manager Jerry Dipoto.
Sloan spent eight years with the Angels. Fraser, a former Angels reliever, worked two years for the club.
Dipoto would not go into details about the decision but said it was "not at all related to what's going on on the field."
Struggling slugger Mark Trumbo, who is batting .174 (24 for 138) in his last 36 games, was not in the lineup for a second consecutive game, but Scioscia said Trumbo will start Thursday's series finale at first base.
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Angels' 2013 schedule
April: 1, 3-4 at Cincinnati; 5-7 at Texas; 9-11 Oakland; 12-14 Houston; 15-17 at Minnesota; 19-21 Detroit; 22-24 Texas; 25-28 at Seattle; 29-30 at Oakland
May: 1 at Oakland; 2-5 Baltimore; 7-9 at Houston; 10-12 at Chicago White Sox; 13-15 Kansas City; 16-19 Chicago White Sox; 21-22 Seattle; 23-26 at Kansas City; 27-28 at DODGERS; 29-30 DODGERS; 31 Houston
June: 1-3 Houston; 4-5 Chicago Cubs; 7-9 at Boston; 10-12 at Baltimore; 14-16 New York Yankees; 17-20 Seattle; 21-23 Pittsburgh; 25-27 at Detroit; 28-30 at Houston
July: 2-4 St. Louis; 5-7 Boston; 9-10 at Chicago Cubs; 12-14 at Seattle; 19-21 Oakland; 22-24 Minnesota; 25-28 at Oakland; 29-31 at Texas
August: 1-4 Toronto; 5-7 Texas; 9-11 at Cleveland; 12-15 at New York Yankees; 16-18 Houston; 19-21 Cleveland; 23-25 at Seattle; 27-29 at Tampa Bay; 30-31 at Milwaukee
September: 1 at Milwaukee; 2-5 Tampa Bay; 6-8 Texas; 10-12 at Toronto; 13-15 at Houston; 16-18 at Oakland; 20-22 Seattle; 23-25 Oakland; 26-29 at Texas