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  1. ANAHEIM — For a couple weeks last winter, Jonathan Loaisiga and JC Ramirez trained at a small baseball field in their hometown of Managua, Nicaragua. In the capital city of nearly 1 million people, the two pitchers live half a kilometer apart, Loaisiga said in Spanish. For as large as the baseball world is, it’s still really small. They just missed each other this week when Loaisiga’s Yankees played Ramirez’s Angels. Loaisiga was summoned from the minor leagues to help New York’s injury-depleted bullpen on Monday. The Angels could probably use Ramirez’s help. Their starting rotation has struggled mightily and the team is mired in fifth place in the American League West. But Ramirez is still in Tempe, Ariz., recovering from Tommy John surgery last year. He has yet to pitch to live hitters. Had they reunited, two-thirds of the Nicaraguans in Major League Baseball would have been on the same field for the first time since Ramirez and Loaisiga trained last winter. Red Sox pitcher Erasmo Ramirez is the third member of the trio. A fourth Nicaraguan-born player, infielder Cheslor Cuthbert, is on the roster of the Royals’ Triple-A affiliate. There’s a fascinating wrinkle to this exclusive club. It has nothing to do with quantity and everything to do with quality. A brief history of baseball in Nicaragua is in order. It began competing in the Central American and Caribbean Games, a spring/summer tournament for the top amateurs in each country, in 1935. Dennis Martinez became the first Nicaraguan to reach the majors in 1976 with the Baltimore Orioles. Another 14 have reached the big leagues since. The country hosts a league in the winter too, but it does not attract the top-name talent of its counterparts in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Venezuela and Mexico. Here’s the interesting part. Only 54 Nicaraguan-born players have played professionally at all according to The Baseball Cube, an online database of pro and college players. Considering 15 of them reached the majors, that’s an astounding accretion rate. “For us, there’s not a lot of players who come out from Nicaragua, so whenever we have an opportunity to play in this league we have that in our mind,” Loaisiga said through an interpreter. “We have to not only get here but set a good example for those kids that are now watching us.” Martinez set a high standard. Before Bartolo Colon won his 246th career game last August, Martinez held the record for most wins by a Latin American pitcher. Nicknamed “El Presidente,” Martinez has loaned his name to two stadiums in Managua. It seems like no coincidence 11 of the 15 Nicaraguans to reach the majors have been pitchers. Pitchers are to Nicaragua as shortstops are to the Dominican Republic. But there’s more to this analogy than a famous role model. Loaisiga wasn’t always a pitcher. Listed at 5-foot-11 and 165 pounds, he doesn’t cut an imposing figure, on a mound or anywhere. “Among other things, when I started playing I used to play the outfield,” he said. “When training turned a little bit more serious, they told me you have a really good chance to become a good pitcher. So the focus changed. I started focusing on pitching, training to become a pitcher. My grandpa used to be a pitcher. It kind of led me in that direction.” The Giants signed Loaisiga when he was 18 years old, but released him after he lost a season to shoulder problems. He was 21 when the Yankees signed him in 2016. A year later, Loaisiga was reportedly throwing in the mid-90s in the instructional league, and the Yankees added him to their 40-man roster to protect him from the Rule 5 draft. Ramirez wasn’t always a pitcher, either. From the time he started playing baseball as a 5-year-old, Ramirez was a catcher and a third baseman before he moved to the mound. Even then, he wasn’t always a natural. Ramirez recounted the story of meeting Edgar Rodriguez, the first professional scout who saw him pitch. “He told me at the time, ‘forget about baseball, go back to school and try to get degrees and stuff because you’re not going to play baseball.’ I was younger, skinny, didn’t throw hard,” Ramirez said. That was almost 16 years ago, but Ramirez recalls the moment vividly. He was 14 years old. “Now kids 15, 16, they are ready to sign,” he said. “When I was 16, I was throwing 83-to-86. Seattle gave me a chance. Three months later I was throwing 93. I don’t know how. They gave me a chance. That gave me confidence.” Related Articles Chris Taylor’s struggles could change Dodgers’ left-field look – but not yet, Dave Roberts says Angels remove struggling Cody Allen from closer role Angels’ Shohei Ohtani faces live pitching for the first time in rehab Yankees hand Angels their 9th loss in 11 games Kenta Maeda roughed up early, Dodgers never recover in loss to Cubs Ramirez has a theory about why so many of his countrymen who sign minor-league contracts eventually reach the majors. For one, he said, Nicaragua is a third-world country. Money is scarce. Those who commit to training for a sport – only boxing is more popular than baseball there, Ramirez said – do so with a purpose. Since there aren’t that many baseball players to see, there aren’t many scouts there to sign them. Lastly, well, “what can I say,” Ramirez said, pausing. “We don’t have the kind of baseball players MLB is looking for. We’re short and kind of chubby. I’m tall. My mom is Nicaraguan and my dad is Cuban. I’m different. … Vicente Padilla is kind of tall. Dennis Martinez is tall too, and skinny. But the other guys, you see they’re short and eventually we’ll get fat. That’s just the way we are. “You see a kid from the Dominican at 16, and you see a Nicaraguan, they’re way different,” Ramirez said. “We really have to try. You’re not going to find power in Nicaraguan hitters. That’s why you mainly have pitchers. You don’t find a hitter with power, or with muscles.” When you’re left to carry the banner for an exclusive club, that banner can get heavy. Ramirez and Loaisiga would love to see their club grow. Mostly, they lead by example, and maybe that’s enough. If Ramirez (who’s 6-foot-5) and Loaisiga (5-10) can both make it, that leaves a lot of room for new members in between. View the full article
  2. ANAHEIM — By having four plate appearances against a pitcher on Wednesday, Shohei Ohtani has reached what Angels manager Brad Ausmus conceded is the “last step” in his rehab as a hitter. “After this,” Ausmus said, “he should be ready.” Ausmus wouldn’t say how much more Ohtani will need, beyond that it will be at least another week of workouts like Wednesday’s, which was Ohtani’s first time facing a pitcher since September. Ohtani faced a right-handed pitcher throwing all his pitches, without Ohtani knowing what was coming. They kept a count as they would in a game. The workout occurred before the ballpark was open to the media, and Ausmus would not give much detail about the session. Ausmus said Ohtani drew two walks, hit one ball that would have been a double into right-center, and another that “might or might not have been a hit.” “He looked good,” Ausmus said. Ohtani will continue having workouts like that until he’s ready to join the Angels, which Ausmus said will be sometime in May. Ausmus said the target is for Ohtani to get “in the neighborhood of 40-ish” at-bats. Ohtani could bat 10 times in a day if the Angels want to do that. Ohtani also played catch again on Wednesday, increasing his distance to 100 feet. He has been throwing three days a week. Ohtani, who had Tommy John surgery on Oct. 1, will not pitch this year. Related Articles Yankees hand Angels their 9th loss in 11 games Angels’ Zack Cozart fortunate to avoid concussion after head-on-knee collision Angels drop wild series opener to Yankees in 14 innings Brian Goodwin earns increased role with Angels Angels get creative, beat Mariners to snap six-game losing streak View the full article
  3. The Yankees’ Brett Gardner, right, is tagged out at home by Angels catcher Kevan Smith during the seventh inning of Tuesday’s game at Angel Stadium. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Brett Gardner #11 of the New York Yankees connects for a triple as Jonathan Lucroy #20 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim looks on during the third inning of a game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds New York Yankees’ Brett Gardner is safe past Los Angeles Angels third baseman David Fletcher after a triple during the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) New York Yankees’ Brett Gardner celebrates after his triple against the Los Angeles Angels during the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Chris Stratton #36 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim looks on after allowing a triple to Brett Gardner #11 of the New York Yankees during the third inning of a game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) New York Yankees starting pitcher Domingo German throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim grounds out during the third inning of a game against the New York Yankees at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Chris Stratton throws against the New York Yankees during the first inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) New York Yankees’ Thairo Estrada is forced out at second by Los Angeles Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons, trying to advance on a ball hit by Tyler Wade during the second inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. Wade was safe at first. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) New York Yankees’ Luke Voit watches his home run against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) New York Yankees’ Luke Voit, left, celebrates after his home run with Gleyber Torres during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) New York Yankees’ Mike Ford watches his two-run home run against the Los Angeles Angels during the fifth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Mike Ford #36 of the New York Yankees reacts to hitting a two-run homerun during the fifth inning of a game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Chris Stratton #36 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim looks on after allowing a two-run homerun to Mike Ford #36 of the New York Yankees during the fifth inning of a game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) New York Yankees’ Mike Ford celebrates in the dugout after scoring on a ball hit by Tyler Wade during the third inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Luke Voit #45 of the New York Yankees reacts to striking out as umpire Bill Welke and Jonathan Lucroy #20 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim look on during the third inning of a game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout can’t get a glove on a double by New York Yankees’ Brett Gardner during the seventh inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Brett Gardner #11 of the New York Yankees reacts after hitting a double during the seventh inning of a game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels’ Justin Bour watches his grand slam against the New York Yankees during the eighth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Justin Bour #41 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim reacts to hitting a grand slam as Austin Romine #28 of the New York Yankees looks on during the eighth inning of a game against the New York Yankees at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Justin Bour #41 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim reacts to hitting a grand slam during the eighth inning of a game against the New York Yankees at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels’ Justin Bour rounds the bases after a grand slam off New York Yankees relief pitcher Chad Green during the eighth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Chad Green #57 of the New York Yankees looks on after allowing a grand slam by Justin Bour #41 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim during the eighth inning of a game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 23: Mike Trout #27 congratulates Justin Bour #41 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim rafter his grand slam during the eighth inning of a game against the New York Yankees at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 23, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Show Caption of Expand ANAHEIM — On April 23, 2002, the Angels lost their fourth consecutive game, leaving their record a dispiriting 6-14. Only two teams in franchise history had a worse record on April 23, and neither of them went on to win a World Series. Of course, the 2002 Angels could not know their destiny in April. They were staring at six months’ worth of unturned pages. The Angels found themselves in a similar place Tuesday after a 7-5 loss to the New York Yankees, their ninth loss in their last 11 games. It’s too soon to declare the season a wash. By win-loss percentage, the Angels are performing no worse than their championship-winning forebears on the same date. Yet it’s quickly become too late to expect their injured stars – Shohei Ohtani, Justin Upton, Andrew Heaney, Tyler Skaggs, et. al. – to be the ones to rewrite history. Many of the Angels’ 25 active players have simply underperformed for too long. On a night when his lineup left no room for error, starting pitcher Chris Stratton (0-2) allowed four runs in five innings. His 7.04 earned-run average is the fifth-worst among all qualified starters. The Angels were trailing 4-0 when Stratton threw his final pitch. Stratton was acquired in a March trade with the Giants for Williams Jerez. The affable Mississippian hasn’t missed a start since. It’s fair to wonder if that will change after this weekend, when Skaggs is expected to return from a left ankle sprain. Stratton’s next start is scheduled for Sunday in Kansas City. Tuesday, there was plenty of blame to spread around. The Angels were 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position until Justin Bour hit a grand slam against Chad Green in the eighth inning. That slashed the deficit from 7-1 to 7-5 and resuscitated the announced crowd of 38,016 at Angel Stadium. Luis Cessa jogged in from the Yankees’ bullpen to face the next hitter, Andrelton Simmons, and induced a catchable fly ball. Brett Gardner tracked it down in deep right-center, only to let the ball pop out of his glove on the warning track. Suddenly Albert Pujols walked to the plate representing the tying run. Cessa walked Pujols on four pitches, bringing up Brian Goodwin as the potential go-ahead run. As quickly as genuine drama materialized, the moment passed. Goodwin, a left-handed hitter, waved at a 2-and-2 slider from Cessa, a right-handed pitcher. The next batter, Kevan Smith, grounded into a routine double play to end the inning. Four of the Angels’ eight hits, and four of their five runs, came in the bottom of the eighth inning. Zach Britton pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning. Only three Angels hitters had ever stepped into a batter’s box against Yankees starter Domingo German (4-1) before Tuesday. Clips from German’s previous start against the Royals looped on the Angels’ clubhouse televisions before the game, as is custom, but his repertoire seemed Greek to them. German, a lithe right-hander from Santo Domingo, kept the Angels off-balance with a steady dose of curveballs, changeups, and low-90s fastballs. He pitched into the seventh inning, allowing only two extra-base hits – both on Goodwin doubles – and four hits total. Related Articles Angels’ Zack Cozart fortunate to avoid concussion after head-on-knee collision Angels drop wild series opener to Yankees in 14 innings Brian Goodwin earns increased role with Angels Angels get creative, beat Mariners to snap six-game losing streak Angels open a new pitching experiment with Hansel Robles, Jaime Barría The Angels scored their only run against German in the fifth inning. Goodwin led off with a double to left-center field. With one out, Tommy La Stella hit a chopper up the first-base line, but German couldn’t field the ball cleanly. Goodwin went to third on the error. The next batter, David Fletcher, hit a ground ball to third base and Goodwin scored. When he wasn’t playing defense, Gardner was a thorn in the Angels’ side. He finished 4 for 5, a home run shy of the cycle. Luke Voit hit a pair of solo home runs – one against Stratton, another against Sam Freeman, a left-handed reliever making his Angels debut. Stratton also allowed a two-run home run to Mike Ford, the first of his career. Fletcher went 2 for 4 as the Angels’ number-9 hitter. Mike Trout went 0 for 2 with two walks. More to come on this story. View the full article
  4. ANAHEIM — Angels infielder Zack Cozart knew he wasn’t concussed Monday night. He knows what a concussion feels like. His 12th-inning collision at second base, when he lost his helmet and slammed head-first into D.J. LeMahieu’s knee, did not result in a concussion. Ultimately the injury looked worse than it was. Cozart jammed his neck and left the game feeling stiffness and a headache. Although he wasn’t in the lineup for Tuesday’s game against the Yankees, Cozart was able to avoid the 10-day injured list. Cozart loaned his second baseman’s glove to teammate Peter Bourjos – which Bourjos then used to make a diving stop on a ground ball in the 13th inning, his first defensive inning outside the outfield. Meanwhile, Cozart remained inside Angel Stadium for a couple of hours while he was observed by a team doctor for concussion symptoms. “I kept getting better and better,” he said. “My headache was going away. I slept fine. Saw a doc this morning. Everything was good.” As for the concussion, Cozart described it as a “super-weird situation.” “I was in low-A,” he said. “I was on deck, telling a kid to get down – on a base hit he was trying to score. I wasn’t even paying attention to the throw. I was telling him to get down, and the guy air-mailed (the throw), hit me in the head. That one rung my bell. I was done. … That one got me. That one messed my vision up and everything. It took me a while to get back from that one.” BULLPEN SHUFFLE The Angels optioned Luke Bard and Taylor Cole to Triple-A Salt Lake after Monday’s 14-inning loss. The two pitchers combined to throw the final five innings against the Yankees. Right-handed reliever Justin Anderson was recalled from Salt Lake and right-hander Sam Freeman was added to the 40-man roster. In a corresponding move, outfielder Justin Upton was transferred to the 60-day injured list. Upton (turf toe) is walking without the aid of a protective boot, but he did not project to return within the season’s first 60 days. Anderson threw 5-2/3 scoreless innings in his first stint with the Angels. Only five of the 22 batters he faced reached base before he was optioned to Salt Lake on April 8. Related Articles Angels drop wild series opener to Yankees in 14 innings Brian Goodwin earns increased role with Angels Angels get creative, beat Mariners to snap six-game losing streak Angels open a new pitching experiment with Hansel Robles, Jaime Barría Angels allow 4 homers to Mariners and drop 6th straight game Freeman, a 31-year-old lefty, is a veteran of 263 games with the Cardinals, Rangers, Brewers and Braves. He pitched a career-high 63 games last season with Atlanta, going 3-5 with a 4.29 ERA. He throws a split-fingered fastball in addition to his two-seam and four-seam fastballs. The Braves released Freeman on March 22, toward the end of spring training. He signed a minor league contract with the Angels six days later. Freeman allowed nine hits, three runs, six walks and struck out seven batters in nine innings (five games) with Salt Lake. He becomes the only left-hander in the Angels’ bullpen. ALSO Pitcher Tyler Skaggs (sprained left ankle) threw a 40-pitch bullpen and took part in fielding drills. Afterward, he told Ausmus “I’m ready to roll.” Skaggs is likely to rejoin the Angels’ rotation Friday, Saturday or Sunday in Kansas City, but Ausmus was not ready to say which game Skaggs might start. … Upton hasn’t been cleared to run yet, Ausmus said. … Shohei Ohtani’s first live batting practice is “probably imminent-ish,” Ausmus said. UP NEXT Angels (RHP Felix Peña) vs. Yankees (LHP CC Sabathia), Wednesday, 7 p.m., Fox Sports West, 830 AM View the full article
  5. Angels starting pitcher Matt Harvey throws to the plate during the first inning of Monday’s game against the Yankees at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) New York Yankees’ Kyle Higashioka, right, scores on a sacrifice fly hit by Gleyber Torres as Los Angeles Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy, left, loses the ball during the third inning of a baseball game Monday, April 22, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds The Yankees’ Kyle Higashioka slides home safely after a sacrifice fly by Gleyber Torres, not pictured, as Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy is unable to handle the throw during the third inning of Monday’s game at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Angels starting pitcher Matt Harvey throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the New York Yankees, Monday, April 22, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) New York Yankees’ Luke Voit, right, runs to first as he hits a solo home run while Los Angeles Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy looks on during the first inning of a baseball game Monday, April 22, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) New York Yankees’ Luke Voit claps as he scores after hitting a solo home run during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Monday, April 22, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) New York Yankees starting pitcher J.A. Happ throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Monday, April 22, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Angels’ Jonathan Lucroy, right, is congratulated by Kevan Smith after hitting a two-run home run during the second inning of a baseball game against the New York Yankees, Monday, April 22, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) The Angels’ Mike Trout has words with umpire Mike Everitt after striking out looking during the sixth inning of Monday’s game against the Yankees at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) The Angels’ Albert Pujols throws his bat after striking out to end the sixth inning of Monday’s game against the Yankees at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) The Angels’ Jonathan Lucroy, left, is tagged out by Yankees relief pitcher Tommy Kahnle as he runs to first base during the 10th inning of Monday’s game at Angel Stadium. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Yankees relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman throws to the plate during the 12th inning of Monday’s game against the Angels at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) The Angels’ Zack Cozart is attended to at second base by a trainer, left, and Manager Brad Ausmus after being injured during the 12th inning of Monday’s game against the Yankees at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) The Angels’ Mike Trout shows his frustration after striking out as Yankees catcher Kyle Higashioka throws the ball back to his pitcher during the 13th inning of Monday’s game at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 22: Albert Pujols #5 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim reacts to striking out to end the 13th inning during a game against the New York Yankees at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 22, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Show Caption of Expand ANAHEIM — The Angels got an encouraging start from Matt Harvey, impressive work from most of their bullpen, a clutch hit from Brian Goodwin and even a diving stop from Peter Bourjos in his professional debut at second base. It wasn’t enough for a victory, though. The Angels lost 4-3 to the New York Yankees in 14 innings on Monday night, with the go-ahead scoring in an inning extended by catcher Jonathan Lucroy’s bad throw to first after a strikeout. It set the stage for Gio Urshela’s RBI single in the 14th against losing pitcher Luke Bard, who ended up striking out four in the decisive inning. The game then ended with pitcher Trevor Cahill striking out, with the Angels out of position players and having had to forfeit their DH. It was the Angels’ seventh loss in eight games. It was the fittingly odd ending to a game that included a little of everything. Harvey bounced back from three straight rough outings to throw six innings, allowing just two runs, but he left in a 2-2 tie and there would be chapters of drama to follow. The Angels bullpen did not allow a hit for five innings until the Yankees finally dented Taylor Cole for a run in the top of the 12th. In the bottom of the inning, the Yankees dominating left-handed closer Aroldis Chapman was on the mound. Kevan Smith led off with a single and, two outs later, Goodwin dumped a single into center field, driving home Bourjos with the tying run. In between, Zack Cozart got hurt sliding back into second base. Cozart’s helmet came off on his head-first slide and he appeared to injure his head slamming into the loose helmet. The Angels were out of position players at the time, so Bourjos had to go into the game at second base, his first time as a professional playing any position but outfield. Bourjos then made a diving stop in the top of the 13th, going to his left to snag a Brett Gardner grounder, then throwing from his knees to get the out. While Bourjos helped Bard get out of the 13th, Lucroy’s mistake was costly in the 14th. His day had started off much better, with his first Angels homer, back in the second inning. It was all the Angels could muster, while Harvey was handling the Yankees. He allowed two runs in six innings, a marked improvement after three straight bad games that ballooned his ERA to 9.64. Manager Brad Ausmus had maintained confidence in Harvey, saying the quality of pitches suggested improvement was possible. “I think the main thing is the misses have been bad misses, very hitter-friendly misses,” Ausmus said before Monday’s game. “If we can avoid that I think he’ll be in good shape because the raw stuff has been very good.” Related Articles Brian Goodwin earns increased role with Angels Angels get creative, beat Mariners to snap six-game losing streak Angels open a new pitching experiment with Hansel Robles, Jaime Barría Angels allow 4 homers to Mariners and drop 6th straight game Angels pitchers looking to find strike zone more often Harvey had been burned by one bad inning in each of his three bad games, and it looked like that was going to be the third inning this time. After allowing a solo homer to Luke Voit in the first inning, Harvey retired five in a row. But Kyle Higashioka led off the third with a double. After a strikeout, Harvey walked the next two batters, loading the bases with one out. Harvey, however, escaped with minimal damage, and it might have been none. Gleyber Torres hit a fly ball down the right field line. Kole Calhoun caught it and uncorked a strong throw to the plate, on target, but it one-hopped past catcher Jonathan Lucroy’s glove as Higashioka slid home. After that, Harvey gave up just one single. The Yankees hit a few balls hard, including a Voit 109-mph line drive to shortstop Andrelton Simmons, but Harvey got outs. He retired the last seven batters he faced, finishing six innings. More to come on this story. View the full article
  6. ANAHEIM — Brad Ausmus stuck with one of his platoons, but not the other, on Monday night. The Angels manager picked left-handed hitting Brian Goodwin to face Yankees lefty J.A. Happ instead of slumping right-hander Peter Bourjos. It was the first time this season that Bourjos had not started against a lefty. Ausmus said that Goodwin, who had two hits against a lefty on Saturday night and an overall average of .346, had deserved the increased the role. “I think he’s earned his way to an opportunity against left-handed pitching,” Ausmus said. Bourjos started on the bench with his .103 average through 39 at-bats. Zack Cozart, however, still started at third, even though he was hitting .102 through 59 at-bats. The Angels could have put David Fletcher at third and Tommy La Stella at second. Ausmus opted to keep the left-handed hitting La Stella on the bench, despite his two homers on Sunday. The decision was also a vote of confidence for Cozart, who Ausmus said has been swinging better than his recent results. Cozart’s hard-hit rate, according to FanGraphs, was just 25.9 percent through April 12. In the next nine games, it’s been 47.6 percent. His six hardest-hit balls of the season have all come in that span, although only three of them have been hits. “The last week or so I’ve felt really good,” Cozart said Monday. “I’ve been working. I’ll keep doing it. I’ll keep going out there and hopefully keep hitting the ball hard and just find some holes. Early in the year, I hit a couple balls hard but it wasn’t consistent. This week it’s been pretty consistent that if I got a good pitch and swung at a good pitch, I was hitting it good. I haven’t struck out a lot (13 times in 64 plate appearances). The last week or so I haven’t been finding any holes.” Cozart said it’s a mental struggle to remain confident in what he’s doing, even as he sees his batting average sink. Related Articles Angels get creative, beat Mariners to snap six-game losing streak Angels open a new pitching experiment with Hansel Robles, Jaime Barría Angels allow 4 homers to Mariners and drop 6th straight game Angels pitchers looking to find strike zone more often Angels come back on Mike Trout’s homer, but come up short again “It’s super easy to be results-oriented and to a certain extent, I am,” he said. “If I was 3 for 3 with three bloop hits, I’d be like ‘Oh, I feel great.’ If I was 0 for 3 with three lasers, I’d be like ‘Oh, what do I need to do?’ You have to fight real hard to not fall in that trap. The odds tell you, the harder you hit it, the better chance you have to get a hit.” ALSO Shohei Ohtani is getting closer to being ready for the first live batting practice in his rehab, but it didn’t happen on Monday and Ausmus “don’t expect him to do it tomorrow either.” Live batting practice is the final step for Ohtani before he can return to the lineup, which the Angels have said will happen sometime in May. … Tyler Skaggs is scheduled for a second bullpen session to test his ankle on Tuesday. Skaggs could return to the rotation a few days after that, if he passes that test. … Andrew Heaney is expected to throw a bullpen session this week, although Ausmus wasn’t sure what day. Ausmus said Heaney “kind of has to start over at this point,” which likely means at least a month of rehab from the time of his first bullpen session. UP NEXT Angels (RHP Chris Stratton, 0-1, 7.00) vs. Yankees (RHP Domingo German, 3-1, 2.37), Tuesday, 7 p.m., Angel Stadium, Fox Sports West, 830 AM View the full article
  7. ANAHEIM — On Saturday night, Angels manager Brad Ausmus informed Scott Servais, his counterpart in the Mariners’ dugout on Sunday, that he was replacing his scheduled starting pitcher with an “opener.” Jaime Barría moved to the bullpen for a day. Hansel Robles got his first career start in his 235th career game. Servais’ reaction? It wasn’t much of one. “No change” to the lineup, Servais said. “When the ‘opener’ stuff comes out, we’ve all dealt with it in the past. We’re going to play our lineup the same. We did see a few (last year). Obviously, when you play Tampa, they were the first ones on it and doing it regularly. We saw a few last year.” The Rays, in fact, introduced the word “opener” to the baseball lexicon in Anaheim when Sergio Romo tossed 1-1/3 scoreless innings against the Angels on May 20, 2018. It was the first of five starts Romo made in 2018 – his first in a career that began in 2008. Another Rays pitcher, Ryne Stanek, started 29 games and pitched 66-1/3 innings. The Rays went 68-49 from May 20 onward. A trend was born. Now, with the Angels starters struggling, Ausmus said the “opener” has a chance to catch on with the Angels. “I think it’ll be definitely used as a tactic again,” he said. “We haven’t really discussed any other time past this.” Servais had three right-handed hitters – Mitch Haniger, Domingo Santana and Edwin Encarnacion – penciled into the top of his lineup. Robles, a right-handed pitcher, was a logical choice. He retired the three in order in his only inning. Not every starting pitcher is a candidate to be replaced by an “opener,” Ausmus said. Barría, who began the day with a 5.87 earned-run average, was a good one. “We had been talking about it for a little while,” Ausmus said. “It’s a way to actually extend the starter. The starter doesn’t have to face the top part of the lineup, which is generally the best part of the lineup. When he starts to go through the middle of the lineup a third time it’s more toward the middle or bottom half. That’s the idea. In theory, you can get more use out of your starter.” Robles’ last professional start was on Aug. 26, 2014 for Double-A Binghamton. SKAGGS UPDATE Left-hander Tyler Skaggs threw a 44-pitch bullpen Saturday to test his sprained left ankle. He reported no pain while he was on the mound, but how his ankle responds to downtime remains a concern. Related Articles Angels allow 4 homers to Mariners and drop 6th straight game Angels pitchers looking to find strike zone more often Angels come back on Mike Trout’s homer, but come up short again Shohei Ohtani takes BP with Angels teammates, moves closer to return Angels rally from 8-run deficit only to lose to Mariners 11-10 “If I had to, like, go out there and pitch I could do it,” Skaggs said. “I just don’t know if you can last for 100 minutes by sitting down for 10 minutes between each inning. That’s the things I’m worried about, not the actual pitching.” Ausmus said Skaggs would probably throw off a mound “again in a couple days and then (we’ll) make a decision after that.” Skaggs is eligible to return from the 10-day injured list Tuesday. ALSO Justin Bour started at first base and Tommy La Stella got his fourth career start at designated hitter Sunday. Ausmus said that Pujols is healthy. “I think it’s important that, to keep (Pujols) healthy, there are going to be days we have to give him off,” Ausmus said. … Deck McGuire, who signed with the Samsung Lions of the Korea Baseball Organization after pitching for the Angels last season, threw a no-hitter on Sunday. … UP NEXT Angels (RHP Matt Harvey) vs. Yankees (LHP J.A. Happ), Monday, 7 p.m., Fox Sports West, 830 AM View the full article
  8. ANAHEIM – The absence of Justin Upton and Shohei Ohtani loomed large over the Angels all week. It was a convenient if not always accurate excuse for six consecutive losses, their longest drought in a season still not old enough to crawl. In the spirit of making do with what you’ve got, Manager Brad Ausmus […] Seattle Mariners’ Edwin Encarnacion throws his batting gloves after striking out against the Los Angeles Angels during the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, April 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds Los Angeles Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons, left, tags out Seattle Mariners’ Tom Murphy during a rundown during the second inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, April 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) Seattle Mariners’ Ryon Healy gets out way the way of an inside pitch during the second inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, April 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) Los Angeles Angels relief pitcher Hansel Robles throws against the Seattle Mariners during the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, April 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) Los Angeles Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons, right, tosses the ball after Seattle Mariners’ Domingo Santana was tagged out trying to stretch a single into a double during the sixth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, April 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Mike Leake throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, April 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) Show Caption of Expand ANAHEIM – The absence of Justin Upton and Shohei Ohtani loomed large over the Angels all week. It was a convenient if not always accurate excuse for six consecutive losses, their longest drought in a season still not old enough to crawl. In the spirit of making do with what you’ve got, Manager Brad Ausmus got creative Sunday. Pitcher Hansel Robles started a game for the first time since he was in Double-A. Utility infielder Tommy La Stella was the designated hitter. The Angels made all the routine plays on defense, and added a couple spectacular plays for good measure, en route to an 8-6 win. The Angels rapped out four home runs and 11 hits in support of Jaime Barría, who swapped places with Robles as Ausmus deployed an “opener” strategy for the first time this year. After cruising to an 8-1 lead, they held on for dear life as their bullpen allowed three homers and five runs in the ninth inning to make the game close. La Stella, taking his first turn as the Angels’ DH in place of Ohtani, hit his fifth and sixth home runs of 2019. Backup catcher Kevan Smith hit his first. Brian Goodwin, who’s hitting .346 in Upton’s stead, hit his third. The Angels never trailed before the announced crowd of 34,155 at Angel Stadium. They had not led at any point in a game since flying home from Texas early Thursday morning. Robles pitched a scoreless first inning. Barría scattered four hits and did not walk a batter over five innings, allowing one run. Ty Buttrey threw a scoreless seventh. Noe Ramirez threw a scoreless eighth inning before allowing home runs to Tom Wilson and Dee Gordon in the ninth. Cody Allen allowed a two-run home run to Mitch Haniger before giving way to Luis Garcia, who got Edwin Encarnacion to fly out to end the game. The Angels jumped on Mariners starter Mike Leake (2-2) for four runs in six innings. They were leading 4-1 in the seventh inning when Shawn Armstrong walked Mike Trout intentionally with first base open and Justin Bour on deck. Bour, 0-for-4 to that point in the game, singled to drive in a run. The next batter, Andrelton Simmons, hit a double for the fifth consecutive game, scoring Trout. La Stella’s second homer of the game, and an RBI double by Kole Calhoun, drove in two more runs against R.J. Alaniz in the eighth inning. The fifth-place Angels (9-13) are separated by 3 ½ games from first-place Seattle (16-9) in the American League West. They host the New York Yankees for four games beginning Monday. After a scoreless first inning, Leake walked Goodwin on four straight pitches to begin the second. The next batter, Smith, turned on an 0-and-1 fastball for a homer, which glanced off the top of the wall in center field. The Angels led 2-0. The Mariners answered quickly. With two outs in the third inning, Mitch Haniger crushed a slider from Barría to left-center field for a double. Domingo Santana was up next. The first pitch he saw had barely left Barría’s hand when Santana lined the ball back to the mound. Barría was fortunate to avoid being hit by the ball, which sailed into center field for a single. Haniger scored easily on Santana’s single and the Angels led 2-1. Related Articles Angels open a new pitching experiment with Hansel Robles, Jaime Barría Angels allow 4 homers to Mariners and drop 6th straight game Angels pitchers looking to find strike zone more often Angels come back on Mike Trout’s homer, but come up short again Shohei Ohtani takes BP with Angels teammates, moves closer to return The Angels needed some alert glove work to keep it close. Ryon Healy was on third base and Wilson on second when Gordon hit a fly ball to right field with one out in the second inning. Calhoun threw to Bour, the cutoff man. Healy did not attempt to tag up and score, but Wilson inexplicably wandered down the line toward third base. When Bour spun the ball to second base, Simmons tagged Wilson out to complete an inning-ending double play. In the sixth inning, Calhoun threw directly to Simmons to retire Santana trying to stretch a single into a double. In the seventh inning, Dan Vogelbach hit a hard ground ball to the shortstop. Simmons recovered his own bobble with his bare hand to throw out Vogelbach by a step. More to come on this story. View the full article
  9. This thread is dedicated to those who have just signed up and been given access to the forum. This is your thread to formally introduce yourself. It goes without saying, but, Welcome to the AngelsWin Forum! Welcome to the Community! Welcome to the #AngelsFamily! To read past introductions, you can find them right here on AngelsWin.Classic
  10. ANAHEIM — The Angels’ miserable week continued, with another game of uncharacteristic homers allowed by Trevor Cahill and an offense that came up one big hit short. The Angels lost their sixth straight game on Saturday night, falling 6-5 to the Seattle Mariners. Cahill gave up three of the four homers the Mariners hit, putting the Angels in a hole they could not escape, no matter how many opportunities they had. The Angels had 13 hits and three walks, but they were 2 for 11 with runners in scoring position, and left 10 runners on base. The uphill climb began immediately, when Cahill gave up a homer to Mitch Haniger leading off the game. He gave up another to Daniel Vogelbach in the first, and then a booming 432-foot homer to Edwin Encarnacion in the fifth. A ground ball pitcher throughout his career, Cahill had allowed three homers in a game just four times in the first 212 starts of his career. The last time was in September 2017. Coming into the game, Cahill had a career average of 0.9 homers per nine innings. This season he has allowed eight homers in 26-1/3 innings, a ratio of 2.7 per nine innings. Cahill also had trouble putting hitters away, with Haniger’s homer and a two-run single by Dee Gordon coming on 0-and-2 pitches. While the Angels couldn’t slow down the Mariners at the plate, they did at least keep the game interesting by putting constant pressure on Mariners lefty Yusei Kikuchi. The Angels have not hit lefties well this season, but they scored four runs on 10 hits in five innings in their first look at the Mariners prized free agent from Japan. Andrelton Simmons had three of the hits, running his torrid stretch to 12 for 25. Simmons scored the Angels’ first run when he came home from first on Albert Pujols’ third-inning double down the left field line. It was the 1,992nd RBI of Pujols’ career, which equaled Babe Ruth for fifth on the all-time list, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Ruth actually has been credited with 2,214, but many of those came before RBIs were recognized as an official statistic in 1920. Pujols later picked up another RBI with a solo homer in the ninth, which cut the Angels’ deficit to 6-5. They had been chasing the Mariners all night, never able to get the game tied. Related Articles Angels pitchers looking to find strike zone more often Angels come back on Mike Trout’s homer, but come up short again Shohei Ohtani takes BP with Angels teammates, moves closer to return Angels rally from 8-run deficit only to lose to Mariners 11-10 Weather wrecks Angels’ flight plans, making for a long night in the clubhouse Down 5-2 in the fifth, they got a run when Simmons doubled and scored on a Jonathan Lucroy single. They got another when Brian Goodwin tripled, driving in Kevan Smith. It was Goodwin’s second hit of the night against a lefty, as he pushes to get more playing time against lefties. So far this season, Peter Bourjos has started against most lefties, but he’s now hitting .103. Although Bourjos had a single, he also popped out with runners at the corners and no outs in the fourth, left the potential tying run on in the fifth and struck out to leave the bases loaded in the seventh. More to come on this story. View the full article
  11. ANAHEIM — The scoreboard shows that Angels pitchers have not delivered what the team had hoped early this season. From Jonathan Lucroy’s perspective, it boils down to something simple. “Really, in general, everyone needs to throw more strikes,” Lucroy said after Félix Peña’s five-inning outing Friday night. “Our starters especially, we need them to get ahead in the count and throw more strikes. They are working on it, and doing their best. But we’ve got to find a way to make it happen.” More strikes would, of course, lead to quicker plate appearances, which would allow pitchers to go deeper in games. The Angels rank 24th in the majors in pitches per plate appearance, which is a side effect of being 24th in strike percentage and 23rd in first-pitch strike percentage. Peña, who has lasted five innings only once, has the lowest strike rate among the Angels’ starters, at 57.5 percent. The major league average is 62.9 percent. Getting the first pitch in the strike zone is always critical for a pitcher. The major league OPS after a first-pitch ball is .847, compared with .610 after a strike. The Angels have allowed an .862 OPS after a 1-0 count, compared with .685 after 0-1. THROW IT BACK Mike Trout came to the defense of a fan who was going to be ejected for throwing the ball back on the field after Omar Narvaez’s homer in the ninth inning Friday. From his position in center field, Trout waved to the security staff, in an effort to allow the fan to stay. “They probably paid some good money to have front-row seats,” Trout said Saturday. “They shouldn’t get kicked out for throwing a ball back. You see that everywhere. I could see if it was something other than a baseball, you have to eject them, but for catching a home run and throwing it back, I don’t see why they should be ejected.” ALSO A day after Justin Bour failed to run on a popup, allowing the Mariners to get a double play, Manager Brad Ausmus would not say how discipline is handled for that sort of mental lapse. “That’s not something that we deal with publicly,” Ausmus said. Bour was not in the lineup Saturday, but he may not have been under any circumstances because the Angels were facing a lefty. … Tyler Skaggs threw a bullpen session and then gave a thumbs-up sign when asked how it went. Skaggs is on the injured list because of a sprained ankle. It is possible he will be activated as soon as Tuesday, the first day that he’s eligible. … Related Articles Angels come back on Mike Trout’s homer, but come up short again Shohei Ohtani takes BP with Angels teammates, moves closer to return Angels rally from 8-run deficit only to lose to Mariners 11-10 Weather wrecks Angels’ flight plans, making for a long night in the clubhouse Matt Harvey suffers third straight rough outing in Angels’ loss Andrew Heaney has continued playing catch. He is expected to get back on a mound sometime in the next week, Ausmus said. Heaney’s rehab has been “all positive so far,” Ausmus said, since Heaney received a cortisone shot a few weeks ago. … The Angels recalled Luke Bard and optioned Dillon Peters, getting another fresh arm for the bullpen. Ausmus said there is nothing wrong with Justin Anderson, who pitched Friday night at Triple-A. “Bard’s been pitching really well,” Ausmus said. “That’s basically it.” … Kole Calhoun was not in the lineup Saturday, getting a routine day off. It allowed Brian Goodwin the chance to start against a left-hander. Goodwin has been platooning with Peter Bourjos, for the most part. Bourjos has slumped, so Goodwin could move toward playing every day. View the full article
  12. The Angels’ Peter Bourjos strikes out with no outs and the bases loaded in the fourth inning of Friday’s game against the Mariners at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 19: Pitcher Felix Pena #64 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitches in the first inning during the MLB game against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 19, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds Seattle Mariners’ Jay Bruce hits an RBI single during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Thursday, April 18, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. The Mariners won 11-10. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 19: Jay Bruce #32 of the Seattle Mariners hits a solo homerun in the second inning during the MLB game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 19, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 19: Kole Calhoun #56 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim watches the ball go for a two-run homerun at right field that was hit by Daniel Vogelbach #20 of the Seattle Mariners (not in photo) during the MLB game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 19, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) Angels pitcher Felix Pena looks on after giving up a solo home run to the Mariners’ Jay Bruce as Bruce rounds third base during the second inning of Friday’s game at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) Seattle Mariners’ Jay Bruce is congratulated by teammates after hitting a solo home run during the second inning of the team’s baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Angels pitcher Felix Pena throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners on Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Seattle Mariners’ Daniel Vogelbach celebrates after hitting a two-run home run during the fourth inning of the team’s baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Angels’ Justin Bour, right, scores on a sacrifice fly by Zack Cozart as Seattle Mariners catcher Omar Narvaez takes a late throw during the fourth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 19: Catcher Omar Narvaez #22 of the Seattle Mariners looks to throw to third base as Justin Bour #41 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim scores in the fourth inning of the MLB game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 19, 2019 in Anaheim, California. Narvaez threw out the runner at third base for the third out. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Marco Gonzales throws to the plate during the first inning of the team’s baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA – APRIL 19: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim hits a two-run homerun to tie the game at 3-3 in the eighth inning during the MLB game against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 19, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout hits a two-run home run during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners on Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout rounds first after hitting a two-run home run during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners on Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Seattle Mariners shortstop Tim Beckham dives for a ball hit for a single by Los Angeles Angels’ David Fletcher during the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Seattle Mariners shortstop Tim Beckham bobbles a ball hit for a single by Los Angeles Angels’ David Fletcher during the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Seattle Mariners’ Omar Narvaez points to his dugout as he round first after hitting a solo home run during the ninth inning of the team’s baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Seattle Mariners’ Tim Beckham, left, and Mallex Smith celebrate after the Mariners defeated the Los Angeles Angels 5-3 in a baseball game Friday, April 19, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Show Caption of Expand ANAHEIM — Within a span of a few minutes, Angel Stadium went from an electric atmosphere charged with hopes for a dramatic victory to an angry mob lamenting another loss. Cody Allen gave up back-to-back homers in the ninth inning of the Angels’ 5-3 loss to the Seattle Mariners on Friday night, just after Mike Trout had tied the score with a two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth. The Angels have lost five in a row, and the last three have been heartbreaking. On Wednesday in Texas, they had the bases loaded with no outs in the ninth, down by two, but could only score one. On Thursday night they overcame an eight-run deficit to tie the score, but still lost. This time, Trout blasted his sixth homer of the season, a two-run shot in the eighth. As he subtly flipped his bat and headed around the bases, the crowd was rocking and anticipating a victory. Shortly thereafter, things turned sour. An out after Trout’s homer, Albert Pujols was hit by a pitch, putting the potential go-ahead run on base. Justin Bour, who had two hits earlier in the game, hit a high pop-up. Bour did not even run to first, actually turning back toward the dugout while the ball was in the air. The Mariners alertly let the ball drop and turned an inning-ending double play. A few moments after that Allen left two curveballs over the plate – one to Tim Beckham and one to Omar Narvaez – and both ended up over the fence. Allen has converted all four of his save opportunities, but now he’s suffered back-to-back losses when entering in a tie game. While the Angels ended up with a loss, at least they finally did some damage against a left-handed pitcher. Coming into the game, the Angels were hitting .162 against lefties, which was dead last in the majors. Through the first seven innings, the Angels had just one run against Seattle lefty Marco Gonzales, although they had opportunities for more. They loaded the bases with no outs in the fourth, but they scored just one. Peter Bourjos, who is 3 for 35, struck out. Zack Cozart, who is 5 for 52, then hit a line drive to left field, good enough for a sacrifice fly. Jonathan Lucroy was then thrown out trying to go to third on the throw to the plate. David Fletcher sparked the top of the lineup with three hits and a walk, including an infield single before Trout’s blast in the eighth. By tying the score, the Angels took Félix Peña off the hook for a loss, after he’d pitched five innings and allowed three runs, all scoring on a pair of homers. Peña gave up a solo homer to Jay Bruce in the second and a two-run shot to Daniel Vogelbach in the fourth. Both times Peña left pitches over the middle. After the Vogelbach homer, Peña stuck around to get five more outs, making for his longest outing of the young season. More to come on this story. Related Articles Shohei Ohtani takes BP with Angels teammates, moves closer to return Angels rally from 8-run deficit only to lose to Mariners 11-10 Weather wrecks Angels’ flight plans, making for a long night in the clubhouse Matt Harvey suffers third straight rough outing in Angels’ loss Angels’ Kole Calhoun feels good despite another slow start View the full article
  13. ANAHEIM — Max Bourjos poked his head in his father’s bedroom Thursday morning. The sun was out, Saturday is his fourth birthday – a big day in a boy’s life – and, in a surprise, Dad was finally home, asleep in bed. He was getting ready for work. About an hour later, Peter Bourjos’ 2½-year-old daughter Charley poked her head in the room. “She fell back asleep with me for like three hours,” Bourjos said, “so that was at least nice.” Bourjos didn’t wake up until about noon, typical for a player in the Angels’ clubhouse Thursday. After their 5-4 loss to the Rangers on Wednesday night in Arlington, a storm front rolled eastward across the Great Plains. At some point, any hope of leaving Globe Life Park on time was dashed. The storm forced the Angels’ team plane to be diverted through Denver. It didn’t leave Dallas until after 3 a.m. Some players weren’t back at their houses in California until 6. In a long season, it was an unusually long night. The game between the Angels and Rangers ended at 10:26 p.m. Central Time in Arlington. With no plane to take them home, all the Angels could do was wait. Players, coaches and staff remained in the visitors’ clubhouse until roughly 2 a.m., hanging on the whims of an unpredictable weather pattern to set them free. They were among the lucky ones. The Dallas Morning News reported that hundreds of flights out of Dallas were suspended Wednesday, and at least 900 area homes were without power. With so much downtime and no place to go, what’s a player to do? Some played card games – blackjack, spades, Texas hold ’em, follow the queens, thirty-one. Others played video games on an Xbox hooked up to the clubhouse television. Halo and Apex Legends were available. Others watched highlights on their phone, or talked, or got social on social media. Noe Ramirez said he browsed various products on the shopping app Fancy, but didn’t buy anything. “I do that a lot, though,” Ramirez said. “I’m always on the apps, always going through stuff, put that in there, looks pretty cool. Then I go to the checkout page and I go, nah, I’m all right.” At one point, catcher Kevan Smith said, players contemplated getting hotel rooms and catching up on sleep in Dallas, then flying home in the morning. It reminded him of a minor leaguer’s schedule. “We all went through it,” Smith said. “It’s not like we’re too good for it. We can still do it.” Mike Trout was less inclined to joke. An avid weather junkie, Trout saw the storm coming long before his teammates hooked up the Xbox. The long night did not catch him by surprise. Trout is already bracing for another possible quagmire – the Angels have a home game next Thursday night, followed by a flight to Kansas City, followed by a game less than 24 hours later against the Royals. Related Articles Matt Harvey suffers third straight rough outing in Angels’ loss Angels’ Kole Calhoun feels good despite another slow start Rangers blast homers, one off Kole Calhoun’s glove, while Angels go quietly Brian Goodwin’s hot start has been a boost to Angels Angels pitchers have rough night in loss to Rangers “It’s not good for – it’s not healthy,” Trout said. “It’s just a tough stretch we’re going through right now. Rest is a big part of the game to keep your body healthy. When you take off from a city at 3:30, it’s tough. “I love weather,” Trout said, “but what it did to us last night … I guess it’s part of it.” INJURY UPDATES Trout tested his strained groin with agility drills on the field prior to Thursday’s game. He served as the Angels’ designated hitter for the fourth straight game. “The verdict was he could play center field,” Manager Brad Ausmus said, “but with the long travel night, we’re going to be cautious. DH him one more day. I fully expect him to play center field (Friday) night.” … Shohei Ohtani will take batting practice with teammates on the field at Angel Stadium for the first time Friday, Ausmus said. There is no target date for Ohtani to face live pitching – the next step in his return from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. … Tyler Skaggs, on the 10-day injured list with a sprained left ankle, will throw off a mound this weekend, Ausmus said. View the full article
  14. ANAHEIM — With his teammates and coaches packed around the batting cage on Friday, Shohei Ohtani was slamming balls over the fence. It’s almost time. After Ohtani’s first batting practice session with his teammates, he expressed excitement about what he’s doing and what he might be doing soon. “I am having fun right now, being able to swing as hard as I can,” Ohtani said through his interpreter. “I wasn’t able to before. I am excited to be back.” Ohtani said the workout was “a lot more fun than hitting by myself,” and he joked that he had been “pretty lonely.” The Angels still aren’t committing to a date for Ohtani’s return, beyond the general statement that it will be sometime in May. Ohtani, who is coming back from Oct. 1 Tommy John surgery, said he’s almost ready. “I need to get a couple at-bats against live pitching first to see where I’m at,” he said. “But as of now, I feel pretty good to go.” Ohtani took 33 swings over five rounds of batting practice. He hit several balls over the fence, most of them to left field. He said going the other way was “by design,” so he could “see where I’m at, where my swing is.” Ohtani said he hoped that his workouts have proven to the front office and medical staff that he’s “healthy and strong. Maybe I can make my return early.” Ohtani is scheduled for live batting practice early next week. How much of that he will do is to be determined. He will not play in the minor leagues, instead hitting in simulated games that will allow him to bat up to 10 times in a session, if necessary. While Ohtani is getting closer, so is the Angels’ scheduled visit to Monterrey, Mexico, for two games against the Houston Astros, May 4-5. “Obviously I am going to aim to be back there, but sooner would be nice,” Ohtani said. CANNING UPDATE Griffin Canning, the Angels’ top pitching prospect, has allowed one run in his first 16 innings at Triple-A this season, with 17 strikeouts and two walks. On Thursday night, he pitched six scoreless innings. General Manager Billy Eppler said Canning has shown good “pitch development and integrity of the tools,” and now they are looking at how his stuff holds up as his pitch-count climbs. A product of Santa Margarita High and UCLA, Canning is expected to be in the majors sometime this season. Related Articles Angels rally from 8-run deficit only to lose to Mariners 11-10 Weather wrecks Angels’ flight plans, making for a long night in the clubhouse Matt Harvey suffers third straight rough outing in Angels’ loss Angels’ Kole Calhoun feels good despite another slow start Rangers blast homers, one off Kole Calhoun’s glove, while Angels go quietly “The stuff is really really good,” Manager Brad Ausmus said. “We just want to make sure he’s prepared to pitch before he comes here. You’ve got to remember this guy hasn’t pitched a lot of professional baseball.” Canning did not pitch the summer after the Angels took him in the second round of the 2017 draft. Last year he rose from Class-A to Double-A to Triple-A, pitching a combined 113-1/3 innings with a 3.65 ERA. ALSO The Angels brought up reliever Taylor Cole and sent down Jake Jewell. Cole had a 2.75 ERA with the Angels last season, but he missed the start of this season with a shoulder problem. … Tyler Skaggs said he is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Saturday. Skaggs is eligible to come off the disabled list on Tuesday, and he and the Angels were hopeful that he’d be ready then. They will proceed cautiously, though, because last year he came back too quickly from a groin injury and it lingered, spoiling his second half and eventually sending him to the disabled list for a month. View the full article
  15. Chris Stratton #36 of the Los Angeles Angels throws to the plate during the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Chris Stratton #36 of the Los Angeles Angels throws to the plate during the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels jogs back to the dugout past Felix Hernandez #34 of the Seattle Mariners after flying out to left in the first inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels sits in the before batting in the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Felix Hernandez #34 of the Seattle Mariners throws to the plate during the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Omar Narvaez #22 of the Seattle Mariners hits a broken-bat single for an RBI during the second inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] Edwin Encarnacion #10 of the Seattle Mariners wipes sweat from his head while standing on third base during the second inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Chris Stratton #36 of the Los Angeles Angels walks to the mound as Ryon Healy #27 of the Seattle Mariners rounds third after hitting a three-run home run during the second inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] The Angels’ Brian Goodwin watches as a two-run home run hit by the Mariners’ Ryon Healy clears the fence during the sixth inning of Thursday’s game at Angel Stadium. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) Brian Goodwin #18 of the Los Angeles Angels flips his bat after striking out looking to end the third inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Manager Brad Ausmus #12 of the Los Angeles Angels chats with pitcher Chris Stratton #36 as he heads into the dugout against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Andrelton Simmons #2 of the Los Angeles Angels rounds third base as he heads home to score on a Albert Pujols single in the the inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Chris Stratton #36 of the Los Angeles Angels in the dugout during their game against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Dee Gordon #9 of the Seattle Mariners turns a double play over Kole Calhoun #56 of the Los Angeles Angels to end the fifth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Felix Hernandez #34 of the Seattle Mariners smiles as Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels jogs back to the dugout after flying out to center in the fifth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Ryon Healy #27 of the Seattle Mariners is greeted at home plate after hitting a two-run home run, his second home run of the game, in the sixth inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels rounds second as he scores on a Andrelton Simmons double in the seventh inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Tommy La Stella #9 of the Los Angeles Angels hits an RBI single in the seventh inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] David Fletcher #6 of the Los Angeles Angels rounds the bases after hitting a game-tying home run in the eighth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) David Fletcher #6 of the Los Angeles Angels celebrates with Kole Calhoun #56 after hitting a game-tying home run in the eighth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) David Fletcher #6 of the Los Angeles Angels celebrates in the dugout after hitting a game-tying home run in the eighth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Luis Garcia #40 of the Los Angeles Angels celebrates after pitching the eighth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Omar Narvaez #22 of the Seattle Mariners rounds the bases after hitting a three-run home run in the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] Dillon Peters #52 of the Los Angeles Angels throws to the plate against the Seattle Mariners in the seventh inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Dillon Peters #52 of the Los Angeles Angels throws to the plate against the Seattle Mariners in the seventh inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Jake Jewell #65 of the Los Angeles Angels in the dugout after pitching in the seventh inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] Ruben Alaniz #56 of the Seattle Mariners throws to the plate in the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels rounds second as he scores on a Andrelton Simmons double in the seventh inning against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have […] Members of the Angels’ Strike Force launch t-shirts into the stands before the Los Angeles Angels take on the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, April 18, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG) Show Caption of Expand ANAHEIM — If their game against the Seattle Mariners began at 9:30 p.m., the Angels would’ve been just fine Thursday. Every player and coach could have banked on eight hours of sleep in his own bed, after their weather-delayed flight out of Dallas deposited them in California just before sunrise. Their batting practice could have been spread out over, well, batting practice, as opposed to the first six innings against Felix Hernandez. They could have had it easy. Nothing came easy for the Angels in an 11-10 loss. The game began at 7 p.m. The Angels fell behind 5-0, then 10-2, then their bats awoke right around the two-and-a-half-hour mark. After the Angels tied the score at 10 in the bottom of the eighth inning, closer Cody Allen allowed an RBI single by Jay Bruce in the top of the ninth to give the Mariners an 11-10 lead. In the bottom of the ninth, Roenis Elias closed the door on a 3-hour, 59-minute whirlwind. The Angels have lost four in a row, while the Mariners snapped their own six-game losing streak. Jon Lucroy led off the inning with a routine grounder to third base, where Ryon Healy slid to smother the ball. Healy rose to one foot, hesitated, and threw late to first base – generously ruled a single. But after pinch-hitter Zack Cozart struck out and Peter Bourjos flew out, Elias got would-be hero David Fletcher to ground out to end the game. Fletcher’s second career home run, a solo blast in the bottom of the eighth inning, completed the Angels’ comeback from an eight-run deficit to tie the score at 10. Andrelton Simmons and Tommy La Stella each finished with three hits. Pujols, Kole Calhoun and Peter Bourjos each had two of the Angels’ season-high 16 hits. Pujols drove in two runs. His 1,991 career RBIs moved him one behind Babe Ruth for fifth place on the all-time list. Facing a 10-2 deficit, 11 Angels batted in the seventh inning. Seven scored. When Bourjos hit a ground ball for the third out, the announced crowd of 33,592 at Angel Stadium finally exhaled. The half-inning lasted a half-hour, transforming a 10-2 laugher into a 10-9 nailbiter. In the top of the eighth inning, Seattle loaded the bases against Angels right-hander Luis Garcia on three consecutive walks. Garcia escaped his own predicament by getting Healy to chase a slider and pop out weakly to right-center field, too shallow to score a run. Dee Gordon grounded a ball up the middle, but Andrelton Simmons dove to stop the ball and fed second baseman La Stella for the inning-ending forceout. The Angels clung to their one-run deficit. After allowing the home run to Fletcher, Mariners pitcher Anthony Swarzak walked Calhoun. With two outs, Pujols worked a free pass. Both runners advanced to second and third on a wild pitch. That brought up Brian Goodwin, who worked the count full before swinging and missing at a slider. The Angels’ aggressive endgame strategy contrasted sharply with their effort against Hernandez. In the third inning, Calhoun hit a one-out double and scored on a two-out double by Simmons. Pujols singled, scoring Simmons. Those were their only runs for six innings. Meanwhile, Seattle scored early and often. Angels starter Chris Stratton was charged with six runs in five innings. The Angels trailed 5-2 when Stratton allowed a leadoff single to Omar Narvaez on his 97th and final pitch in the sixth inning. Right-hander Jake Jewell took over and promptly allowed a two-run home run to the next batter, Ryon Healy. Healy was a one-man wrecking crew. Sporting a .218 batting average when the day began, Healy drove in five runs and scored two more from the number-8 spot in the Mariners’ batting order. Number-7 hitter Omar Narvaez hit a three-run home run off Jewell in the seventh inning, in which the Mariners batted around (all nine hitters completed at-bats in the inning). That extended the Mariners’ lead to 10-2. Narvaez drove in four runs and scored three. Of some consolation for the Angels: Seattle’s 1-3 hitters – Mallex Smith, Mitch Haniger and Domingo Santana – finished 2 for 17 with seven strikeouts. Related Articles Weather wrecks Angels’ flight plans, making for a long night in the clubhouse Matt Harvey suffers third straight rough outing in Angels’ loss Angels’ Kole Calhoun feels good despite another slow start Rangers blast homers, one off Kole Calhoun’s glove, while Angels go quietly Brian Goodwin’s hot start has been a boost to Angels Just when the game seemed out of reach, the Angels decided to make it interesting. La Stella led off the seventh inning with a single and scored on a scorching double by Bourjos. That was it for Hernandez, who allowed nine hits and a walk while striking out three. He was charged with four runs, all earned, in six innings. R.J. Alaniz was the first pitcher out of the Mariners’ bullpen. The right-hander struck out Fletcher before the carnage escalated. Calhoun hit a three-run homer to right-center field, bringing the Angels within 10-5. After a quick visit from his pitching coach, Alaniz allowed a single to Mike Trout, an RBI double to Simmons and another RBI double to Pujols. Leading 10-7, Mariners Manager Scott Servais turned to right-hander Brandon Brennan. Brennan walked Brian Goodwin and allowed an RBI single to La Stella. Goodwin went to third, then scored on a wild pitch by Brennan to draw the Angels within 10-9. More to come on this story. View the full article
  16. ARLINGTON, Texas — Kole Calhoun is certain that he’s not having a repeat of 2018. Although Calhoun was hitting .180 heading into Wednesday’s game, he does not have the same feeling as he had on his way to a .145 average in the first two months of last season. “I am hitting the ball well,” Calhoun said. “I’m having some good at-bats, some bad at-bats. It’s still early. What have I got? Fifty or sixty at-bats? All I can do is hit the ball? Would I like some to fall in? Of course. But if I’m hitting the ball hard, I’m doing my job.” Statcast has metrics that calculate a hitter’s expected numbers, based on the quality of his contact. Calhoun’s average is 44 points below expected and his slugging percentage is 100 points below. His hard hit percentage, which measures the frequency of balls leaving the bat at 95 mph or higher, is 54.5. That ranks 26th in the major leagues. Last year it was 42.9 percent. Calhoun’s average exit velocity of 93 mph is higher than his rate for any of the previous four seasons in which the data was collected. “He’s hit the ball extremely hard,” Manager Brad Ausmus said. “He just has not been very lucky, so to speak.” There is a natural assumption that Calhoun’s problem isn’t bad luck, but that his hard-hit balls are to the part of the field where the fielders are bunched. Calhoun does face shifts often, but so far they have not been the reason for his low average. This season Calhoun has hit .318 when pulling the ball, compared with .182 when hitting it up the middle or to the left side. Calhoun simply shrugs. “I feel really good,” Calhoun said. “They’ll fall in. It seems like every time I try to force it and do more, it doesn’t go my way. All I can do is hit the ball hard, and whatever happens, happens.” Calhoun also has the added confidence this year of working daily with hitting coaches Jeremy Reed and Shawn Wooten, who were the minor league instructors he credited most for helping him out of his tailspin last year. “It’s awesome,” Calhoun said. “I think a lot of guys are learning a lot about their swings, things that get them into trouble and things that help.” Calhoun believes the experience from last year – getting into and out of a career-threatening slump – has helped make him better prepared for the way he’s started this year. “I think I was at a point where my career could have gone one or two ways,” Calhoun said. “This year hasn’t gone the way I wanted to, but I showed I can come back from something as tough as that was mentally. It’s not really getting off to the start I want, numbers-wise, but a lot of it is out of my control. I keep doing what I’m doing, and sooner or later they will fall.” TROUT AT DH Mike Trout was in the lineup at designated hitter for the third straight game Wednesday because his right groin is still not quite 100 percent. “I feel better,” Trout said before Wednesday’s game. “Still a little achy. Obviously, I want to play center field, but it’s just day by day. If I come here and feel good and I think I can play center field, I play center field. That’s where I’m at right now.” Trout said he took some fly balls in center on Tuesday afternoon and “just got achy a little bit after.” Trout beat out an infield hit at an elite sprint speed of faster than 30 feet per second on Wednesday. Running in a straight line or around the bases is not as much an issue as the type of lateral or awkward movements that would be required in the outfield. In the meantime, Trout is getting plenty of treatment, and each day he hopes to be back in the outfield. Related Articles Rangers blast homers, one off Kole Calhoun’s glove, while Angels go quietly Brian Goodwin’s hot start has been a boost to Angels Angels pitchers have rough night in loss to Rangers Angels’ Shohei Ohtani gets positive news from latest check-up Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs goes on IL with sprained ankle “It’s getting better every day,” he said. “It’s not getting worse. That’s the big thing. My mindset is to play center field tomorrow. If I come in and it still bothers me, we’ll see how it goes.” ALSO Matt Thaiss, one of the Angels’ top prospects, was in the lineup at third base at Triple-A Salt Lake on Wednesday. Thaiss was a catcher in college, and he had not played a position besides first base in the Angels system. … Starting pitcher Tyler Skaggs did long toss on Wednesday afternoon. Ausmus said Skaggs “feels really good.” The plan would be for him to throw a bullpen session within the next few days. The Angels are still hoping he’ll be able to rejoin the rotation as soon as he’s eligible, on April 23. … The Angels have listed Chris Stratton, Félix Peña and Trevor Cahill for the first three games of this weekend’s series against the Seattle Mariners. They have not decided on their pitcher for Sunday, which would be Jaime Barría’s turn. Ausmus said it’s “to be determined” when Barría will pitch next. View the full article
  17. The Rangers’ Asdrubal Cabrera slides home to score as Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy waits on a late throw during the fifth inning of Wednesday’s game in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) throws against the Texas Rangers during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds Texas Rangers starting pitcher Lance Lynn (35) throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 17: Andrelton Simmons #2 of the Los Angeles Angels first bumps Zack Cozart #7 after scoring in the second inning against the Texas Rangersat Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 17, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout (27) prepares to score against the Texas Rangers on a hit by Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons during the third inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout (27) scores in front of Texas Rangers catcher Isiah Kiner-Falefa (9) on a hit by Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons during the third inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Texas Rangers’ Delino DeShields (3) flips his bat after making a fly out against the Los Angeles Angels to end the third inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Texas Rangers catcher Isiah Kiner-Falefa (9) visits with starting pitcher Lance Lynn (35) after the base were loaded against the Los Angeles Angels during the third inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 17: Andrelton Simmons #2 of the Los Angeles Angels gets the throw ahead of the steal attempt by Elvis Andrus #1 of the Texas Rangers in the second inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 17, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons (2) prepares to tag out Texas Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus (1) for the last out of the first inning during a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) is pulled from the game against the Texas Rangers during the fifth inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 17: Delino DeShields #3 of the Texas Rangers hits a sacrifice bunt to advance the runners against the Los Angeles Angels in the fifth inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 17, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 17: Shin-Soo Choo #17 of the Texas Rangers slides into third for two-run triple against the Los Angeles Angels in the fifth inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 17, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Angels relief pitcher Ty Buttrey composes himself after allowing a run against the Texas Rangers during the fifth inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Show Caption of Expand ARLINGTON, Texas — Matt Harvey has not made the kind of first impression he or the Angels had hoped. A promising outing for Harvey ended up as his third straight disappointing game, and the Angels lost 5-4 to the Texas Rangers on Wednesday. The Angels had a chance to overcome Harvey’s rough start, loading the bases with no outs in the ninth, down by two, but they scored just one run. Justin Bour was called out on strikes on a pitch that appeared to be outside, for the first out of the inning. A run scored when Andrelton Simmons grounded into a fielder’s choice at third, then Brian Goodwin struck out. The Angels were swept by the Rangers. They had a 2-0 lead after three innings on Wednesday, having put consistent pressure on Texas starter Lance Lynn, but it all started to go wrong after that. Harvey gave up an unearned run in the fourth and four runs in the fifth, a performance that left his ERA at 9.64 after four games. He has allowed 20 earned runs in 18-2/3 innings. Harvey gave up two runs in six innings in his first start, but he has since had three rough outings. In each of the bad games, he’s mostly been burned by one inning. He gave up five runs in the first inning on April 4, three runs in the second inning on April 9 and then four runs in the fifth on Wednesday. That spoiled what had been, up to that point, an encouraging outing. Harvey faced the minimum nine hitters through three innings, allowing just a single. In the fourth, he gave up an unearned run, with second baseman Tommy La Stella kicking a ground ball with two outs to allow the run to score. Harvey took the mound in the fifth with a 2-1 lead, facing the bottom of the Rangers’ order, and the wheels fell off. Asdrubal Cabrera lined a single on a good slider at the bottom of the zone. Harvey then hung a slider that Logan Forsythe yanked into left field. Isiah Kiner-Falefa dumped a first-pitch fastball into center field, driving in a run. After Delino DeShields bunted to move the runners into scoring position, Shin-Soo Choo turned on an inside fastball and pulled it down the right field line for a triple, ending his night. One more run was added to Harvey’s line when Ty Buttrey gave up an RBI double to Danny Santana, putting the Angels behind 5-2. The Angels could not get those runs back, although there were some encouraging signs from the offense. Andrelton Simmons had his second straight two-hit game. Jonathan Lucroy also had two hits. Zack Cozart had two hard outs and a single. Bour doubled. La Stella, who had hit a flyout with the bases loaded in the third, hit a solo homer in the eighth. More to come on this story. Related Articles Angels’ Kole Calhoun feels good despite another slow start Rangers blast homers, one off Kole Calhoun’s glove, while Angels go quietly Brian Goodwin’s hot start has been a boost to Angels Angels pitchers have rough night in loss to Rangers Angels’ Shohei Ohtani gets positive news from latest check-up View the full article
  18. ARLINGTON, Texas — As Brian Goodwin was going through a spring training in which he hit .116 with the Kansas City Royals, he tried to tell everyone – coaches, the manager, the front office – to pay no attention to the numbers. “I was just trying different stuff,” Goodwin said. “Spring training is when you try things in game situations. I was trying to take advantage of the time to put as much stuff to the test as I possibly could.” Goodwin now says the Royals must not have believed him, because just before Opening Day they designated him for assignment. Now that he’s hitting .333 with a .950 OPS in his first 44 plate appearances with the Angels, he believes he’s been vindicated. “This is what all spring training was for,” Goodwin said Tuesday. “This is what all the playing around and experimenting was for. All the trials I went through in spring training was for a reason. I thought (the Royals) were clear on what was going on and what would come from it. I guess sometimes you have to prove it. They didn’t see it right away. Now they have to see it from the other side.” Goodwin, 28, was originally drafted by the Washington Nationals, and he hit .252 with 13 homers and an .802 OPS over 96 games with the Nationals in 2016 and 2017. His OPS dropped to .761 last season with the Nationals and Royals, and the Royals let him go this spring. Still trying to establish himself in the majors, Goodwin has made progress in a limited sample size with the Angels. “Since we’ve gotten him he’s been one of our most consistent offensive performers,” Manager Brad Ausmus said. “He really has.” The Angels claimed Goodwin on waivers after Justin Upton suffered his toe injury, and they began the season with the left-handed hitting Goodwin and the right-handed hitting Peter Bourjos platooning. Even though Bourjos came into Tuesday’s game with one hit in 24 at-bats, he was the starting center fielder in place of Goodwin against Texas Rangers lefty Mike Minor. Ausmus said it’s not enough at-bats yet to waver from the platoon, but he conceded that “if Goodwin continues to do this,” he could become an everyday player. Goodwin has a career OPS of .893 against lefties, compared with .763 against righties. He admitted that he used to feel uncomfortable against lefties before getting a heaping dose of them in winter ball a few years ago. Goodwin said he figures that he’ll eventually prove to the Angels he can handle lefties, just as he is on the way to showing the Royals they were wrong about him. “The more they see it, the more they understand what they’re working with,” Goodwin said. “The more they see my confidence and hopefully the success that comes from having a good at-bat, it all starts there.” NO RUSHING OHTANI Shohei Ohtani, who said last week he felt his power was actually better than last year, has apparently been putting on a show in his batting practice sessions at Angel Stadium. “Yeah, he’s got a lot of power and he’s showing it,” General Manager Billy Eppler said Tuesday. “He’s hitting a lot of balls out regularly.” Despite that, and the Angels’ need for a middle of the order hitter, Eppler said he never has the urge to speed Ohtani’s schedule beyond the original plan, which had him returning in May. Ohtani is scheduled to begin facing live pitching sometime next week, and Eppler said they’ll do that by having him face “professional pitchers” in simulated situations somewhere in California. Eppler ruled out a minor league rehab assignment and sending Ohtani to extended spring training in Arizona. ALSO Andrew Heaney (elbow inflammation) has extended his throwing to 110 feet, and he’s about two weeks from being able to throw off a mound, Eppler said. Eppler said Heaney is “feeling fine.” … Related Articles Angels pitchers have rough night in loss to Rangers Angels’ Shohei Ohtani gets positive news from latest check-up Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs goes on IL with sprained ankle Mike Trout groin injury has improved enough for him to rejoin Angels Angels series finale in Chicago postponed by snow and cold Nick Tropeano (shoulder) threw three innings and 45 pitches in an extended spring training game on Monday. … JC Ramírez (Tommy John surgery) should start facing hitters sometime during the first half of May, Eppler said. Eppler said they will stretch him out to at least 60 pitches and then decide if they will bring him back as a reliever or continue to stretch him out to start. … Keynan Middleton (Tommy John surgery) is scheduled to begin facing hitters in the second half of May. Middleton, however, is expected to take less time in that stage of his rehab because he only has to be built up to be a reliever. … The Angels optioned John Curtiss after he threw 48 pitches on Monday night. They recalled left-hander Dillon Peters and put him in the bullpen. … Félix Peña, whose turn was bumped by the rotation shuffling this week, is still scheduled to start on Thursday or Friday, Ausmus said. View the full article
  19. Angels second baseman Tommy La Stella watches as the ball glances off the glove of right fielder Kole Calhoun and falls behind the wall for a two-run home run by the Rangers’ Asdrubal Cabrera during the fourth inning of Tuesday’s game Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Fans look on as a ball that bounced off the top of Los Angeles Angels right fielder Kole Calhoun’s glove falls over the fence for a Texas Rangers’ Asdrubal Cabrera two-run home run in the fourth inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds Fans watch as a ball that bounced off the top of Los Angeles Angels right fielder Kole Calhoun’s glove falls over the wall for a two-run home run by Texas Rangers’ Asdrubal Cabrera during the fourth inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Texas Rangers’ Asdrubal Cabrera follows through on a two-run home run in front of Los Angeles Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy during the fourth inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Texas Rangers starting pitcher Mike Minor throws to a Los Angeles Angels batter during the first inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 16: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels bats in the third inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 16, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 16: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels bats in the third inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 16, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Jaime Barria works against the Texas Rangers in the first inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Jaime Barria throws to a Texas Rangers batter during the first inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Texas Rangers’ Shin-Soo Choo stops and turns to the infield after striking out against the Angels in the third inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols walks to the dugout after striking out in the first inning of the team’s baseball game against the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. Rangers catcher Jeff Mathis is at right. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Angels starting pitcher Jaime Barria walks to the dugout after turning the ball over to Manager Brad Ausmus, center rear, during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Texas Rangers’ Joey Gallo connects for a two-run home run off Los Angeles Angels relief pitcher Dillon Peters during the sixth inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Angels relief pitcher Dillon Peters, left, stands on the mound and second baseman Tommy La Stella looks to the outfield as Texas Rangers’ Joey Gallo rounds the bases on his two-run home run during the sixth inning of a baseball game in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Angels manager Brad Ausmus, left, walks out to take the ball from relief pitcher Dillon Peters, center, as catcher Jonathan Lucroy stands by during the seventh inning of the team’s baseball game against the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Texas Rangers’ Elvis Andrus follows watches his single the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez) Show Caption of Expand ARLINGTON, Texas — The Angels’ game against the Texas Rangers had the makings of a pitchers’ duel until the Rangers busted it open with two two-run homers. One barely got over the fence, perhaps with help from Kole Calhoun. The other barely stayed in the ballpark. Jaime Barría gave up a wall-scraping homer to Asdrubal Cabrera in the fourth and then Dillon Peters allowed a monster homer to Joey Gallo in the sixth inning of the Angels’ 5-0 loss to the Rangers on Tuesday night. Calhoun leaped at the warning track and touched Cabrera’s drive before it dropped on the other side of the fence. Gallo launched his blast 439 feet, landing it on the concourse beyond the lower deck of seats down the line. It was Gallo’s fifth homer in five games against the Angels this season. He has six overall. Gallo’s latest homer was on the first pitch of the night thrown by Peters, and it tacked a fourth run on to Barría’s line. Barría worked five-plus innings, most of which seemed encouraging. He gave up a run in the first but then two scoreless innings. He retired the first two hitters of the fourth, but then he walked Gallo. Cabrera then belted a drive toward the right field fence, and Calhoun came up empty on his attempt at a spectacular catch. Offensively, the Angels also came up empty against lefty Mike Minor, who pitched his first career shutout. The Angels had a potential rally in the first after a David Fletcher leadoff walk and a one-out single by Andrelton Simmons, his first of two hits. Albert Pujols struck out and Jonathan Lucroy smoked a line drive right to shortstop Elvis Andrus. Lucroy was robbed again in the seventh. After Pujols drew a leadoff walk, Lucroy ripped one up the middle but Andrus snagged it and flipped the ball out of his glove to second baseman Domingo Santana, who barehanded it and threw to first for the double play. Otherwise, the Angels didn’t do much with Minor. He needed 10 pitches or fewer in six of nine innings. The Angels did not get a runner into scoring position against Minor after the first. More to come on this story. Related Articles Brian Goodwin’s hot start has been a boost to Angels Angels pitchers have rough night in loss to Rangers Angels’ Shohei Ohtani gets positive news from latest check-up Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs goes on IL with sprained ankle Mike Trout groin injury has improved enough for him to rejoin Angels View the full article
  20. The Rangers’ Joey Gallo, left, scores in front of Angels catcher Kevan Smith during the fifth inning of Monday’s game in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Angels starting piutcher Trevor Cahill throws to the plate during the first inning of Monday’s game against the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 15: Shelby Miller #19 of the Texas Rangers delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 15, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. All players are wearing the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson Day. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 15: Albert Pujols #5 high fives Brian Goodwin #18 of the Los Angeles Angels after a two-run home run in the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 15, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. All players are wearing the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson Day. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Angels designated hitter Mike Trout smiles in the dugout after he scored on a home run by Brian Goodwin during the first inning of Monday’s game against the Rangers in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Texas Rangers third base coach Tony Beasley, left, congratulates Shin-Soo Choo, right, who hit a solo home run against the Los Angeles Angels during the third inning of a baseball game Monday, April 15, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Texas Rangers’ Joey Gallo, left, is congratulated by Elvis Andrus, right, after hitting a solo home run against the Los Angeles Angels during the third inning of a baseball game Monday, April 15, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Angels starting piutcher Trevor Cahill throws to the plate during the first inning of Monday’s game against the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Texas Rangers’ Joey Gallo hits a solo home run against the Los Angeles Angels during the third inning of a baseball game Monday, April 15, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) The ball gets past Angels catcher Kevan Smith, left, as the Rangers’ Nomar Mazara, right, scores during the fifth inning of a baseball game, Monday, April 15, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) Los Angeles Angels relief pitcher Cam Bedrosian, center, is pulled from a baseball game against the Texas Rangers by manager Brad Ausmus, left, during the fifth inning Monday, April 15, 2019, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) The Rangers’ Delino DeShields wears shoes with Jackie Robinson’s image prior to Monday’s game against the Angels in Arlington, Texas. Major League Baseball teams commemorated Jackie Robinson Day on Monday. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 15: Asdrubal Cabrera #14 is greeted at the plate by Nomar Mazara #30 of the Texas Rangers after a two-run home run against the Los Angeles Angels in the sixth inning of a baseball game at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 15, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. All players are wearing the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson Day. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 15: Kyle Dowdy #43 of the Texas Rangers pitches in the fifth inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 15, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. All players are wearing the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson Day. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 15: Nomar Mazara #30 of the Texas Rangers dives safely back to second as Tommy La Stella #9 of the Los Angeles Angels fails to catch the throw from third in the fifth inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 15, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. All players are wearing the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson Day. (Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images) Show Caption of Expand ARLINGTON, Texas — At this early, small-sample, stage in the baseball season, it only takes one day to spoil an otherwise good start. Trevor Cahill and Cam Bedrosian each had tough outings on Monday night in the Angels’ 12-7 loss to the Texas Rangers, putting a dent in the numbers they’d accumulated through the first two weeks of the season. Cahill, who had a 3.50 ERA through 18 innings in his first three starts, gave up four runs in four innings. His ERA jumped to 4.50. The score was tied 4-4 when Bedrosian took over, having allowed just three hits and four walks in his first 6-2/3 innings, with eight strikeouts. Bedrosian couldn’t even get through the fifth, allowing four runs on four hits and a walk while recording only two outs. His ERA went from 2.70 to 6.14. Jake Jewell then gave up three more runs in the sixth, to bury the Angels on a night that had started so well. With Mike Trout back in the lineup after missing the previous three games, the Angels scored three runs in the top of the first. Kole Calhoun, who had been in a 3-for-37 slump, led off the game with the first of his three hits, including a two-run homer in the eighth. Trout then walked. An Albert Pujols sacrifice fly drove in Calhoun, and Brian Goodwin blasted a homer to center to drive in Trout. Tommy La Stella’s RBI single in the third padded the lead to 4-1, but Cahill then let it get away in the third. Shin-Soo Choo blasted a homer to center. Danny Santana singled and came around on two groundouts, and then Joey Gallo launched a homer into the upper deck in right field. Cahill had allowed just 0.9 homers per nine innings over his career. He did not allow multiple homers in any game last season, but he’s now allowed two in two of his four Angels’ starts. The Angels were still tied after Cahill left, but the bullpen let the game get away. Angels relievers came into the game with a 2.08 ERA, second best in the majors. Previously, they had only lost one game in which they had a lead, and that was a 1-0 lead. More to come on this story. Related Articles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani gets positive news from latest check-up Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs goes on IL with sprained ankle Mike Trout groin injury has improved enough for him to rejoin Angels Angels series finale in Chicago postponed by snow and cold Angels’ Zack Cozart snaps hitless drought with 3 hits View the full article
  21. ARLINGTON, Texas — Shohei Ohtani had a follow-up appointment on Monday and was cleared to begin facing live pitching in about a week, bringing his return to the lineup a step closer. “All is good,” Manager Brad Ausmus said Monday afternoon. “Everything came back good. The doctor was pleased and he’s going to continue his progression.” The Angels have not wavered from the expectation that Ohtani will be back in May. Ohtani is currently taking batting practice against a pitching machine, which provides game-like velocity. If he has no setbacks after another week of that, he’ll be ready to face pitchers. “As to where that happens, that’s still to be determined,” Ausmus said. The Angels could bring minor league pitchers to Anaheim to pitch to Ohtani, which they did last summer when he was cleared to hit after his initial injury. They also could send him to extended spring training in Arizona to face pitchers there, either in simulated games or in games against other teams. In either of those scenarios, the Angels can have him bat as often as they’d like. Finally, the Angels could send Ohtani to one of their minor league affiliates to play in actual games. Although that is less efficient in terms of the volume of at-bats he could get, Ausmus said “there is something to be said for competing in a baseball game environment.” Ohtani also continues to throw three times a week, although he is not going to pitch this season. Related Articles Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs goes on IL with sprained ankle Mike Trout groin injury has improved enough for him to rejoin Angels Angels series finale in Chicago postponed by snow and cold Angels’ Zack Cozart snaps hitless drought with 3 hits Angels use full-team effort in thrilling win over Cubs View the full article
  22. CHICAGO — Mike Trout’s injured groin has improved enough for him to rejoin the Angels in Texas, although his return to the lineup is still uncertain. The Angels announced that Trout was seen by Dr. Steve Yoon on Sunday and ultrasound imaging showed “improvement to his groin.” The statement also said that Trout had reported improvement. Trout “will continue to be evaluated to determine his readiness to play,” the statement said. Trout has been out since early in Tuesday’s game, when he first reported discomfort in his right groin. A day later, he said he felt it was improved, but wanted to be cautious because it’s so early in the season and he didn’t want to risk causing the injury to be more serious. The Angels had Trout remain in Southern California while the rest of the team traveled to Chicago, and he underwent further tests on Friday. The tests Friday also showed improvement, although not enough for him to get to Chicago for Saturday’s game. Related Articles Angels series finale in Chicago postponed by snow and cold Angels’ Zack Cozart snaps hitless drought with 3 hits Angels use full-team effort in thrilling win over Cubs Angels give up 4 homers to Cubs to snap winning streak Angels Shohei Ohtani cleared to hit off a machine, still on target for May return By staying in Southern California for two more days, Trout missed only one more game, because Sunday’s game was postponed by snow. The weather in Texas, where the Angels are scheduled to open a three-game series on Monday, will be more conducive to maintaining the players’ health. The forecast high temperates for the three days range from 77 to 82 degrees, with a chance of rain on Wednesday. So far Trout has missed parts of four games with the injury, and the Angels have won three of them. View the full article
  23. ARLINGTON, Texas — The Angels got Mike Trout back but lost Tyler Skaggs on Monday. While Trout returned to the lineup for the first time since Tuesday, after nursing a sore right hamstring, Skaggs was placed on the injured list with a sprained left ankle. Skaggs said he’s scheduled to throw on Monday afternoon and then have a bullpen session in a few days, so it’s possible he will miss the minimum 10 days. Skaggs said he landed awkwardly in the fourth inning of Friday’s start at Wrigley Field. He was trying to field a bunt by Kyle Schwarber. He finished the inning but his velocity dropped. Skaggs said an MRI exam on Saturday afternoon showed no serious damage. The Angels recalled Jaime Barría to take Skaggs’ spot on the roster. There was no immediate word on what the Angels would do with the rotation. They have Trevor Cahill starting on Monday and Matt Harvey on Wednesday, with Félix Peña and Barría available for Tuesday. Chris Stratton could pitch as soon as Thursday. The Angels also recalled reliever John Curtiss and optioned Taylor Ward. The Angels needed Ward when Zack Cozart was hit by a pitch. More to come on this story. Related Articles Mike Trout groin injury has improved enough for him to rejoin Angels Angels series finale in Chicago postponed by snow and cold Angels’ Zack Cozart snaps hitless drought with 3 hits Angels use full-team effort in thrilling win over Cubs Angels give up 4 homers to Cubs to snap winning streak View the full article
  24. Chicago Cubs’ Javier Baez, left, is safe at second base after hitting a double as Los Angeles Angels second baseman David Fletcher applies a late tag during the ninth inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. The Angels won 6-5. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels relief pitcher Cody Allen, right, celebrates with catcher Jonathan Lucroy after the Angels defeated the Chicago Cubs 6-5 in a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago.(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Sound The gallery will resume inseconds Chicago Cubs’ Kyle Schwarber strikes out swinging during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. The Angels won 6-5. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs’ Kyle Schwarber reacts after striking out swinging during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. The Angels won 6-5. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs third baseman David Bote throws out Los Angeles Angels’ David Fletcher at first base during the seventh inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs’ Mark Zagunis hits a two-run single against the Los Angeles Angels during the eighth inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels’ Peter Bourjos hits a sacrifice fly during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs left fielder Kyle Schwarber catcher a fly ball hit by Los Angeles Angels’ Andrelton Simmons during the eighth inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs relief pitcher Randy Rosario reacts after Los Angeles Angels’ Kole Calhoun walked during the sixth inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels’ David Fletcher, left, scores as Kole Calhoun walks to first base during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon, right, talks with catcher Willson Contreras during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols, left, walks to first base as he celebrates with first base coach Jesus Feliciano during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs relief pitcher Brad Brach kicks the mound during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels first baseman Justin Bour dives to snag a ground ball hit by Chicago Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. Rizzo was out on the play. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo, right, scores on a one-run double by Javier Baez as Los Angeles Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy looks to the field during the fifth inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs’ Javier Baez hits an RBI double against the Los Angeles Angels during the fifth inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) A kid holds a sigh before a baseball game between the Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs shortstop Javier Baez, left, tags out Los Angeles Angels’ Justin Bour during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels first baseman Justin Bour, right, tags first base for an out against Chicago Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels’ Brian Goodwin, right scores on an RBI single by Zack Cozart as Chicago Cubs catcher Willson Contreras looks to the field during the second inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels’ Zack Cozart hits an RBI single during the second inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels first baseman Justin Bour, bottom, tags out Chicago Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo at first base during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Actor, writer, producer and director Jon Favreau throws out the ceremonial first pitch before a baseball game between the Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Actor, writer, producer and director Jon Favreau throws out the ceremonial first pitch before a baseball game between the Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Angels, Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Chris Stratton throws against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Chris Stratton throws against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) Show Caption of Expand CHICAGO — Zack Cozart yanked a single through the hole on the left side of the infield in the second inning on Saturday and then breathed a sigh of relief. “I got to first and I told (Anthony) Rizzo, ‘I just doubled my hit total this year, so I’m doing great,’” Cozart said. Cozart had been mired in a 1-for-33 start to his season, including going hitless in his previous 22 at-bats, equaling the longest drought of his career. After that, Cozart had two more hits, lifting his average from .030 to .108 in one day. “Hits are cool, that’s for sure,” Cozart said. “It’s even better when you win. I’ve always said my No. 1 goal coming into any game is, I don’t want to individualize it. I want to do whatever it takes to win, whether that’s make a defensive play or run the bases right. Obviously getting three hits when you win, that’s a bonus.” Cozart said he’d been working hard with the Angels hitting coaches trying to rediscover his swing from 2017, when he hit .297 with a .933 OPS and homers.Related Articles Angels use full-team effort in thrilling win over Cubs Angels give up 4 homers to Cubs to snap winning streak Angels Shohei Ohtani cleared to hit off a machine, still on target for May return Mike Trout’s injury shows improvement, but he will miss weekend in Chicago Angels cautiously optimistic with early bullpen success It helped him land a three-year, $39-million contract with the Angels. Last season he was hitting .219 with a .658 OPS before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury in June. This year has started off even worse. “It’s not ideal,” he said earlier this weekend. “My whole career I’ve grinded through years and this is no different. I’m going to grind through this and come out feeling better about it.” He’s feeling a little better already. ADELL UPDATE Angels’ top prospect Jo Adell, who is out for the start of the season after suffering knee and ankle injuries in major league spring training, has been taking batting practice at extended spring training. The initial timeline for Adell to return to action sometime in June, and the Angels haven’t changed that expectation, according to director of minor league operations Mike LaCassa. “Where he’s at today from the time of the injury, we’re very pleased with what he’s done so far,” said LaCassa, who is in Chicago with the Angels this weekend. LaCassa also said left-hander José Suarez, who hurt his shoulder in spring training, has been pitching in extended spring training games, nearing a return to Triple-A. One of the Angels’ top pitching prospects, Suarez is expected to pitch in the majors sometime this year. ALSO Chris Stratton came up just one out shy of qualifying for his first Angels victory on Saturday. He had allowed two runs when he was pulled with a 3-2 lead, after 81 pitches. “It’s like he hit a wall a little bit there,” Manager Brad Ausmus said. “He was cruising along and then he seemed to have a little trouble in his final innings. But he did an excellent job of mixing his pitches. He kind of cruised there for a little over three-plus.”… Albert Pujols drew a bases-loaded walk as a pinch-hitter in the sixth inning. It was the 1,988th RBI of his career. Pujols has already pinch-hit twice this season. He pinch-hit only twice in seven years while Mike Scioscia managed the Angels. One other time he replaced the designated hitter, which doesn’t count as a pinch-hitting appearance, although it’s effectively the same thing… Cody Allen got a chance at his first major league plate appearance when the Angels got to his spot in the eighth, because he was needed to pitch the ninth. Allen grabbed Tommy La Stella’s bat because “it looked hitterish. He’s been swinging it well, so I figured he was a nice enough guy that he’d let me borrow a hit or walk.” Allen struck out… The weather forecast remains ominous for Sunday, with a high temperature of 39 degrees and 100 percent chance of rain or snow. Manager Brad Ausmus said his hope is that the game could be played as scheduled, or else postponed early. “I’m hoping we don’t sit around all day, having nothing to do on my birthday,” said Ausmus, who turns 50 on Sunday. View the full article