March 28, 2012 |
GOODYEAR, Ariz. — The Angels were in so many close, low-scoring games last season that their starting pitchers, with little margin for error, began to feel like Philippe Petit , the French tightrope walker, every time they took the mound. The offense ranked 10th in the American League with 667 runs and was shut out for the first five innings of games a major league-high 50 times, making the accomplishments of Jered Weaver , Dan Haren and Ervin Santana , who combined for a 45-30 record and 2.98 earned-run average, all the more remarkable.
May 28, 2012 |
On the night the Angels got their heart and soul back, they may have wound up losing their best arm. What they didn't lose was the game, rallying for a 9-8 victory over the New York Yankees on Mark Trumbo's walk-off home run leading off the ninth inning Monday. That ran the team's winning streak to seven games in a row, its longest since July 2009, and lifted it to .500 for the first time since the season's opening week. But it may prove to be a costly loss because, with Torii Hunter watching from the dugout for the first time in two weeks, ace Jered Weaver hobbled off the mound after 12 pitches because of a lower-back injury.
May 2, 2012 |
Angels manager Mike Scioscia said he is "kind of going caveman" with the starting lineup Wednesday against the Twins at Angel Stadium. He has moved Vernon Wells to No. 2 in the order, with Erick Aybar leading off. Then come the big bats -- Albert Pujols, Kendrys Morales and Torii Hunter. Howard Kendrick is batting sixth, followed by Mark Trumbo, Chris Iannetta and Peter Bourjos. It's an experiment of sorts, particularly Wells batting second. The Angels have won the first two games of a three-game home series against the Twins and will have ace Jered Weaver on the mound.
January 7, 2012 |
The Angels on Saturday reached agreement with second baseman Howie Kendrick on a four-year deal pending a physical, according to a person who is familiar with negotiations but could not speak publicly about them. With the new contract, which is thought to be worth $33.5 million, the Angels will avoid Kendrick's final year of arbitration and lock him up through his first three years of free agency. General Manager Jerry Dipoto said last week that he had begun preliminary discussions with the agents for Kendrick and shortstop Erick Aybar about multiyear deals, and those negotiations obviously moved quickly with Larry Reynolds, Kendrick's agent.
August 15, 2012 |
Who says baseball isn't a contact sport? Well, umpire Greg Gibson certainly wouldn't think so after being knocked upside the head by Torii Hunter's spikes during a play at home plate in Wednesday night's game against the Cleveland Indians. Gibson, who was working behind home plate, had to leave the game after being knocked in the head by Hunter's foot as the veteran outfielder tried to score from first base on a double by Kendrys Morales in the fifth inning. Hunter, who was tagged out by Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana on the play, dove head first and reached a hand out to touch the plate, which he missed.
March 24, 2012 |
It can't be a very good spring when you've had half as many closed-door meetings with the manager and general manager (two) as you've had hits (four) in a dozen exhibition games. But those were the sad statistics Bobby Abreu was saddled with Saturday after being summoned by Angels Manager Mike Scioscia and GM Jerry Dipoto, who questioned the veteran outfielder about his critical comments to a Venezuelan publication. Abreu, unhappy with his diminished role, entered camp saying he preferred to be traded if he wasn't going to play every day, comments that got him called into the manager's office before the team's first full-squad workout.
September 7, 2012 |
The Angels will need resilience to find a way to make the playoffs two games out of a wild-card spot with 24 to go in a multi-team chase. Friday, they showed some. Standing up to American League strikeouts leader Max Scherzer and staring at a tight two-out, two-strikes at-bat in the bottom of the ninth inning, pinch-hitter Alberto Callaspo slapped a winning single through the third base-shortstop hole in a 3-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers. First baseman Kendrys Morales, who had a one-out single in the ninth, said the victory was "a tribute to the way we're playing -- relaxed, not preoccupied with the scoreboard.
March 24, 2012 |
Reporting from Surprise, Ariz. -- Angels right-hander Ervin Santana continued to show no ill effects from a comebacker that hit him in the throwing shoulder earlier this month. He gave up only one run and five hits in five innings of a 3-2 exhibition victory over the Texas Rangers in Surprise Stadium Saturday. Santana, who has 2.19 earned-run average in 12 1/3 spring innings, struck out two and walked two against a lineup of Rangers regulars, his only blemish Ian Kinsler's solo home run to lead off the fifth inning.
March 13, 2012 |
Mike Trout, the Angels' top minor league prospect, is scheduled to make his spring debut Tuesday against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Trout, 20, was beset by a mysterious flu-like illness earlier in camp that caused him to lose 10 pounds. With a clean bill of health and the weight coming back, Trout was expected to enter Tuesday's game as an outfield substitute. “I look at it this way: Go out and play hard, put up some numbers and see what happens,” Trout said. “I'm going to do everything I can so they should know where to put me.” Trout, a first-round pick in 2009 who batted .326 with 13 triples, 11 home runs and 33 stolen bases last season at Double-A Arkansas, hit .220 in 123 at-bats with the Angels.
March 14, 2012 |
Ariel Pena is not expected to stick on the Angels' opening-day roster, but the 22-year-old Dominican pitcher gives the team a live arm to call upon should later circumstances require such help. Pena on Tuesday pitched three hitless innings in relief of Dan Haren, securing a shutout of the Arizona Diamondbacks. “He's probably, of all the things I've seen in camp, one of the brightest youngsters we can talk about,” Angels Manager Mike Scioscia said. “He's hit 95 [mph], shows terrific poise, command and his exceptional changeup hasn't come out as much as it will.