May 27, 2012 |
SEATTLE -- Kendrys Morales ended a lengthy power drought, and C.J. Wilson threw six superb innings Sunday at Safeco Field to lead the Angels to a 4-2 victory over the Seattle Mariners and their first sweep of a four-game road series since Aug. 6-9, 2004, at Kansas City. Morales drove in a run with a single in the first, hit a solo home run in the fourth, and doubled and scored in the ninth, as the Angels extended their season-high winning streak to six games and improved to 24-25.
May 27, 2012 |
SEATTLE -- The term "closer by committee" is usually a misnomer, a phrase managers use when their struggling ninth-inning specialist is demoted and there is no other reliever in the bullpen dominant enough to fill the role. But when Manager Mike Scioscia uses the term these days, it might actually be true, which is stunning considering the state of his bullpen in April, when the Angels blew six of their first seven save opportunities and had only one reliable reliever, veteran left-hander Scott Downs . The arrival of Ernesto Frieri , who was acquired from San Diego for two minor leaguers on May 3, and a return to form by Jordan Walden , who lost his closing job to Downs on April 27, has changed everything.
May 26, 2012 |
SEATTLE -- Alberto Callaspo delivered a pinch-hit grand slam -- the sixth in franchise history and first since 2004 -- in the sixth inning Saturday to lead the Angels to a 5-3, come-from-behind victory over the Seattle Mariners and ace Felix Hernandez at Safeco Field. Albert Pujols also hit a solo home run to left-center field in the fourth inning, giving the slugger six homers in 11 games and 21 runs batted in during his last 20 games, to help the Angels extend their winning streak to five, a season high, and move into second place in the American League West, 6 1/2 games behind Texas.
May 23, 2012 |
OAKLAND — Mike Scioscia won't declare that Ernesto Frieri is his new closer — he'd still like the option of using veteran left-hander Scott Downs at the end of games — but the Angels manager's actions and Frieri's performance suggest the 26-year-old right-hander has assumed that key role. Frieri struck out three of four batters in the 11th inning Wednesday for his first big league save, nailing down the Angels' 3-1 victory over the Oakland Athletics that featured Alberto Callaspo's clutch two-out, two-run double in the top of the inning.
May 19, 2012 |
- Ernesto Frieri's eyes lighted up. Would he like to be a closer? "For sure," Frieri said. "That's every reliever's dream. " The Angels might give Frieri that chance. If the Angels had not scored insurance runs in the top of the ninth inning Friday, Frieri would have been in line for his first major league save in the bottom of the inning. That was more about wanting left-hander Scott Downs to face the left-handers the San Diego Padres had lined up in the eighth inning, Manager Mike Scioscia said.
May 18, 2012 |
SAN DIEGO — This is baseball in another dimension. It is the Mike Trout dimension. It is fast, too fast for the other men on the field. Trout put major league outfielders on notice Friday, in the Angels' 7-2 victory over the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Play your best, and it will be a challenge to contain him. Play at less than your best, and an extra base will be lost, or two. "I don't believe in singles," Trout said. "I'm just trying to be aggressive and make some things happen.
May 13, 2012 |
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Jason Isringhausen thought he'd have a more prominent role when he signed with the Angels in February, and so did the front office, which envisioned the 39-year-old right-hander as one of three primary short relievers in front of opening-day closer Jordan Walden . But in 11 appearances before Sunday, Isringhausen, a former closer who has 300 saves, entered a game with the Angels leading only once, when he pitched the...
May 12, 2012 |
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Pitcher C.J. Wilson considers himself "straight edge," a subculture whose adherents refrain from using alcohol, tobacco and recreational drugs. Utility player Mark Trumbo would like the Angels to be more hard edge. Trumbo was fired up after Saturday's 4-2 win over the two-time defending American League-champion Rangers, and not just because he put the Angels ahead with a prodigious two-run homer in the fourth inning. He loved the way Wilson and four Angels relievers pitched aggressively and fearlessly to baseball's most potent lineup, and the way the Angels bounced back from Friday night's lopsided 10-3 loss.
May 8, 2012 |
MINNEAPOLIS -- Scott Downs has had some tough breaks this season, suffering a bruised right ankle on April 12 at Minnesota and a bruised left knee Sunday against Toronto in Anaheim, both injuries putting the reliever on crutches. The 36-year-old left-hander has also been very fortunate. The April injury looked serious -- he twisted the ankle as he covered first, was stepped on by the base-runner and had to be helped off the field -- but Downs avoided the disabled list and missed only three games.
May 7, 2012 |
MINNEAPOLIS -- There was bad news and some not-so-bad news for the bullpen Monday, a day after the team lost its two best relievers to injury within a three-pitch span of the ninth inning. Set-up man LaTroy Hawkins , who has a 1.08 earned-run average in 10 appearances, will be out four to six weeks because of a broken pinky finger on his right (throwing) hand. He was injured when he fielded Omar Vizquel's game-ending line drive in a 4-3 win over the Toronto Blue Jays.