Friday, June 06, 2008
New KPCC Series On The DodgersMichael Roe of Pasadena City College's 89.3 KPCC forwarded this first part of a seven-part series on the Dodgers, this on their move west.
How Michael Anton Got His Game BackThanks to Maxwell in the comments for pointing out this Cedar Rapids Gazette story on Michael Anton, a crafty lefty currently mowing 'em down in the low minors for the Angels' Midwest League affiliate as a 23-year-old. Anton was in a terrible car crash that wrecked his pitching career at the Virginia Military Institute; a prematurely deploying airbag gave him a compound fracture of his pitching arm. He spent years recovering, and a chance encounter with Angels AAA starter Jesse Smith eventually got him a tryout:
"I looked around and saw a scout in the stands. He turned out to be from the Cincinnati Reds," said Smith, still in the Angels system but dealing with an arm injury. "I told him 'Hey, this guy's a scout. How about if I go talk to him?' I thought maybe being a player myself, it might help. I asked this scout how I could get my buddy here a tryout. That kind of opened the door."He was drafted last year in the 12th round; after last night's game he has a 2.13 ERA and a 7-3 record.
The young man got his tryout, then another and another. The Angels were impressed enough by what they saw, that they drafted him in the 12th round last year and signed him.
Shawn Kemp?I know the Register is outsourcing their Dodgers coverage to the Daily News, but really... Shawn Kemp? Copyediting, anyone?
The Angels' Designated Non-HitterBill Plunkett takes on a sore spot that seems to have plagued the post-2002 Angels frequently, namely, their ineffective use of the designated hitter as a rotating rest stop for their aging outfielders. This should not be a surprise to anyone following the Angels; only once since 2002 (in 2006, when they were fifth) have the Angels been even in the top half of AL teams with DH production, as measured by OPS. And that one year they were effective, it was Tim Salmon in a surprisingly effective swan song.
- Matt Kemp has appealed his suspension.
- Rafael Furcal will be taking ground balls at shortstop, but Rotoworld opines he's unlikely to be back without at least a few rehab games.
- Jason Schmidt threw a side session and will make another rehab start Sunday for either Inland Empire or Las Vegas.
- Tyler Chatwood, the Angels' first pick (in the second round) in yesterday's draft is expected to sign shortly; he had previously accepted a scholarship with UCLA.
- Jose Arredondo has really, really big hands that help him throw a split-fingered fastball:
"He's like E.T.," Manager Mike Scioscia said, "only he has five fingers."
And they do more than phone home.
"I've got big hands, monkey hands," Arredondo said with a chuckle. "That helps me throw the split-fingered fastball, which is a good pitch to have."
- The Padres' Tadahito Iguchi separated his shoulder and could be out up to four weeks.