Angel Debuts - 1982

The 1982 Angels were built for the postseason. Sound familiar? Opening Day saw four Angel debuts, and three of them went on to become Top 100 Angels. On April 6, Opening Day pitcher Ken Forsch threw to his new batterymate, Bob Boone, a free agent pickup who had made a name for himself in Philadelphia. The biggest free agent signing in Angel history hit a single in his first at-bat in the top of the 2nd, but he probably felt comfortable seeing as Reggie Jackson had once been an Athletic and the game was in the Oakland Coliseum. He might have been feeling a little too comfortable – he was thrown out stealing. 3Bman Doug DeCinces, acquired from the Orioles for "Disco" Dan Ford, popped out to end the inning. DeCinces had faced the Pirates in the 1979 World Series and their shortstop Tim Foli was now his teammate, acquired in the offseason for Brian Harper. Foli grounded out in the top of the 3rd while Boone followed him with a single in his first Angel AB.

391. Bob Boone
392. Reggie Jackson
393. Doug DeCinces
394. Tim Foli
395. Jose Moreno
396. Stan Bahnsen

In a 16-inning game on April 8, Jose Moreno, a Rule 5 draftee from the Padres, made his Angels debut pinch running for Bob Boone in the top of the 11th inning. He was caught stealing and appeared in only two more games as an Angel. Journeyman Stan “Bahnsen Burner” Bahnsen had signed with the Angels as a free agent. He made his first appearance with a Halo on April 9, pitching an inning and two-thirds of scoreless relief. In late April, the Angels acquired veteran infielder Mick Kelleher from the Tigers for cash to stop the bleeding from the team having lost Rick Burleson for the season. Kelleher grounded out in his first Angel AB playing shortstop in Baltimore on May 2. On May 12 the Angels traded Tom Brunansky and a minor leaguer to the Minnesota Twins for Rob Wilfong and Doug Corbett. Wilfong made his debut the next day as a pinch runner in the bottom of the 12th inning and made it to 2nd base on a walk-off Juan Beniquez single. Corbett appeared the following day, May 14, and saved a Bruce Kison start with 2 and a third scoreless IP.

397. Mick Kelleher
398. Rob Wilfong
399. Doug Corbett
400. Dave Goltz

Dodger reliever Dave Goltz was released by the blue-crew on April 27 and signed by the Angels on May 24. After shaping up in the minor leagues he became the 400th man to enter a major league baseball game in an Angels uniform, coming out of the bullpen on June 2 and stopped the bleeding in the 8th inning of a loss to the Tigers at the Big A. In August, still desperate for pitching, the Angels rescued Luis Tiant from the Mexican Leagues and started him on August 5. He allowed 4 runs in 3.1 innings, although he did strike out 6. In the same game, Rick Steirer made his major league debut in relief and gave up an earned run in 2 innings pitched, with Tiant earning the loss that day.

401. Luis Tiant
402. Rick Steirer
403. John Curtis
404. Tommy John
405. Gary Pettis
406. Ricky Adams

Veteran Lefty John Curtis was purchased from the Padres on August 31 and made his debut in Detroit the next day in the bottom of the 7th with the Angels down by 1. He added to that lead by surrendering a triple to Alan Trammel to plate Enos Cabell. Curtis would pitch out of the Angels pen in 1983 and 84 before retiring. Veteran surgery-author Tommy John was acquired from the Yankees for player to be named later on August 3 and started for the Angels in Milwaukee on September 3, pitching a Complete Game 5-2 victory. Sure would have been nice to win one game in Milwaukee a month later. Future Angel centerfielder Gary Pettis made his major league debut as a late season innings-rester, coming in to play CF in the bottom of the 9th of a 6-4 Angels victory over Chicago. Infielder Ricky Adams made his major league debut on September 15 in Chicago, this time with the Angels being slaughtered 7-1 in the 5th inning, he came in as a defensive replacement to rest the regulars. It was one of 8 games he would play as an Angel in 1982.

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