June 18, 2011 |
Reporting from New York Peter Bourjos made a spectacular catch and knocked in the winning run with a double Friday night, and all the center fielder got was a lousy spot on the Angels bench Saturday night. Such is life for a (usually) light-hitting defensive whiz on an offensively impaired team with a hot-hitting designated hitter/outfielder in a National League park. Manager Mike Scioscia decided before the series in Citi Field that Bourjos, who bats right-handed, would start against New York Mets left-hander Chris Capuano on Friday and left-handed-hitting Bobby Abreu would start against right-hander Mike Pelfrey on Saturday.
July 26, 2011 |
Reporting from Cleveland — Jordan Walden returned Tuesday to the scene of the crime. A night earlier, he had his pocket picked on the mound at Progressive Field, retiring only one of the five batters he faced as the Cleveland Indians rallied for a walkoff win over the Angels. The scenario was eerily similar Tuesday when Walden came out of the bullpen in the ninth inning to protect a 2-1 lead against the heart of the Indians' lineup. So when Travis Hafner led off with a bad-hop single off the edge of the infield, it looked as if the Angels rookie was in for another mugging.
April 17, 2012 |
It's not typical baseball strategy to reduce the playing time of a 26-year-old, second-year major leaguer who accounted for 29 homers and 87 runs batted in as a rookie. But that seems to be what's happening to Mark Trumbo . The Angels sat Trumbo for a second straight game Tuesday, starting Alberto Callaspo at third base and underlining the point that the slugger's conversion from first base to third is still a work in progress. "I understood I wouldn't be playing every day, and that's what's playing out," Trumbo said after an extended practice session of fielding ground balls as infield coach Alfredo Griffin and Manager Mike Scioscia watched.
September 8, 2012 |
The beneficiary of Mark Trumbo's slump is Vernon Wells, but the veteran Angels left fielder said he's taking no delight in seeing the young slugger struggle. "I want him to succeed," Wells said Saturday, when he was given a second start in three games over Trumbo. "If he succeeds, this team wins games. "I care about him. I want him to get through this. " Trumbo, 26, has 30 home runs, but his average has shrunk from .306 to .269 during a 34-game stretch in which he's batting .173 (23 for 133)
September 20, 2011 |
Reporting from Toronto — Every B-grade adventure movie has a scene in which the intrepid hero, finding himself in a fix, comes up with an escape plan that has only a slim chance of succeeding. That's where the Angels find themselves now. Despite Tuesday's easy 10-6 win over the Toronto Blue Jays, the Angels remain five games back of victorious Texas in the American League West with eight games left to play. In the wild-card race the Angels climbed to within 3½ games of the lead.
June 21, 2011 |
Hank Conger had a double and a single Tuesday night, but that did nothing to console the rookie catcher after the Angels' 5-2 loss to the Florida Marlins. Two more throws to second base on stolen-base attempts sailed high and away from their target — one on a pitchout — and one of those Marlins runners eventually scored in the sixth inning. Opponents have been successful on 35 of 42 stolen-base attempts against Conger. "I don't want to say the hits were useless tonight," Conger said, "but as a catcher, your four at-bats really aren't going to affect the game as much as you can behind the plate calling pitches, blocking balls in the dirt and throwing the ball well to second.
July 21, 2010 |
Coming out of the All-Star break, Manager Mike Scioscia said he expected Hideki Matsui to "be very productive in the second half" and to end up with "numbers that are comparable to what he did in New York last season." So far, the numbers don't add up. Matsui hit a two-run home run in the seventh inning of Tuesday night's 10-2 win over the Yankees, but he's batting .249 with 11 homers, 49 runs batted in, 26 runs and 70 strikeouts in 96 games, putting him on pace for 18 homers, 82 RBIs, a career-low 43 runs and a career-high 118 strikeouts.
August 1, 2010 |
Texas left-hander Cliff Lee , acquired in a July 9 trade from Seattle, threw his American League-leading seventh complete game of the season Sunday, giving up four runs and nine hits in a 4-1 loss to the Angels. Lee (9-5) has gone at least eight innings in nine straight starts, the longest such streak since Toronto's Pat Hentgen had a run of 12 straight in 1996. Lee has thrown at least eight innings in 12 of his last 13 starts. "It's stupid," Angels pitcher Jered Weaver said in admiration of Lee's durability and reliability.
May 10, 2011 |
Angels Manager Mike Scioscia has made some unorthodox moves — remember Orlando Palmeiro batting third in 2002 and Maicer Izturis hitting cleanup last season? — but this one seemed right out of left field. Howie Kendrick , the team's regular second baseman and part-time first baseman, started in left field in place of the injured Vernon Wells on Tuesday night. Kendrick played a little outfield in high school but had never played there in 11 professional seasons.
May 8, 2012 |
MINNEAPOLIS — The Angels are tired of tipping their caps to opposing pitchers, tired of being asked whether their failure to score had more to do with the guy on the mound or their approach at the plate. They were supposed to have one of their most potent lineups ever, but Tuesday night's 5-0 loss to the Minnesota Twins in Target Field marked the seventh time they have been shut out in 31 games, most in the major leagues. "It's mind-boggling," Angels right fielder Torii Hunter said.