Thursday Halolinks: Tommy Hanson Says He's 100%, Say Good Bye To Chone

USA Today Sports

Although he wasn't able to start the forth inning, Angels starter Tommy Hanson says his tight triceps is "fine".

I'm a little worried. Tight triceps, sore elbows, bad backs, and other maladies have been the story with the Angels pitching staff this spring. Are these guys ever going to get healthy enough to post some good outings? Angels 6, Indians 5 - FOX Sports. "Angels reliever Sean Burnett allowed three runs and three hits while getting only one out." The big event from yesterday's game was seeing Tommy Hanson slight arm wiggle as he was warming up in the forth inning. I didn't notice it while watching on TV, but Angels' catcher Chris Iannetta saw it and went to find out what was wrong with his starter: Hanson shrugs off tightness in triceps - The Orange County Register. "Hanson, who was confident he'd be able to make his last two starts before the start of the season, still could be able to get his pitch count up enough to make his regular-season debut as scheduled April 6. Hanson threw 45 pitches Wednesday. He needs to get to 90 pitches before the season, Scioscia said." It's obvious the club is cautious with Hanson, but he sounded confident there's nothing wrong with his arm: Angels starter Tommy Hanson departs early with right triceps tightness - angels.com. ""Zero," he said. "One-hundred percent, I'm fine." Hanson won't require an MRI, plans to make his next turn and has zero doubt he'll be ready to go for the regular season. "I felt fine," Hanson said after giving up two runs in three innings against the Indians. "I think they're just taking the cautious route."

The good news is the hitters are hitting, and the fielders are fielding: Trumbo's single helps lift Halos past Indians - angels.com. "For the Angels, Kendrick went 2-for-4, giving him a hit in all 15 of his starts this spring and putting his batting average at .511. Mark Trumbo went 2-for-4 with a hard lineout and Pujols hit a stand-up double in four plate appearances." Although it has been fun seeing Howie Kendrick rake, is his spring in the two-spot just an audition or are the Angels using this time to get him used to hitting behind Trout? Oh, and what happened to Peter Bourjos? And why is Vernon Wells getting so much playing time?

Only two pitchers (out of 8) were able to get through their outing without allowing a base-runner (Maronde and Graham), and both figure to start the season in the minors. However, there is one player who may stay with the big club when they break camp next week: Carpenter looking to nail down bullpen spot - angels.com. "Carpenter hasn't allowed a run in nine of his 10 outings, putting his spring ERA at 3.38. As camp has gone by, and the list of relievers have whittled down, the 27-year-old has looked like a logical fit to help round out the Angels' 'pen to start the season."

Although his career flamed out after leaving Anaheim, to describe Chone Figgins' career as "once-promising" and "very sad" is wrong. Figgins should be very proud of his career: Breakfast Links: MLB targeting Braun, Bad news for Hanley?, Figgins is released - MLB Daily Dish. "The Marlins released Chone Figgins yesterday, likely putting an end to his once-promising and now very sad career. " Rob Neyer takes a look at some other players who fell off that performance cliff: Chone Figgins is hardly the first of his kind - Baseball Nation. "The problem with Wells' contract wasn't the dollars, really; it was the years. He's actually had two real good years on this contract, but seven years for a real good player just doesn't make any sense. The problem with Figgins' contract wasn't really the dollars or the years, though both were probably a bit excessive; the problem was that his performance fell off a cliff, which nobody (that I've seen) predicted.

I thought this was pretty cool: Who’s Going to Throw 2013′s Fastest Pitch? - FanGraphs Baseball. "As a necessary part of talking about 2013, we first have to talk about 2012. According to PITCHf/x, this was the fastest pitch of the 2012 season"

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Are the Angels getting desperate? If so, this desperate: Oswalt Working Out, Aims To Pitch For Contender - MLBTradeRumors.com. "Free agent righty Roy Oswalt is working out at Mississippi State and waiting for the right offer from a contender, agent Bob Garber of RMG Baseball tells MLBTR. Unlike a year ago, geography will not be a factor for Oswalt. Instead, he's focused entirely on pitching for a contender. Oswalt would be open to late inning relief in certain cases, though he prefers to start." Or this desperate: Chris Young throws five shutout innings as opt-out date looms. "The Padres, one of Young’s former teams, appear to be in need of starting pitcher. The Angels’ already thin staff took a hit today when right-hander Tommy Hanson left a start with right triceps tightness, three frightening words for a pitcher. The Twins could use another starter, and they had a scout in attendance."

Surprising (and not so surprising) peripheral pairs of 2012 - Beyond the Box Score. "While Chen had a nice debut season in the U.S., he would not seem to be a likely candidate as the pitcher most similar to Weaver. Thriving on a constant low BABIP allowed, the Angels' ace has been living dangerously, which could come back to bite him soon."

A Snapshot of Team Finances: Bottom Tier - FanGraphs Baseball. "Today we begin our look at the financial health of all thirty major-league teams, starting with the bottom ten."

I'm not making light of a very serious thing, but is this being blow out of proportion? Are we now not allowed to use the word "rape" when describing a non-sexual assault situation? Lou Piniella uses the word ‘raped’ while discussing the Blue Jays-Marlins trade - Yahoo! Sports. ""Well they just, I don’t want to use the word ‘raped,’ but they basically took a lot of talent from the Miami Marlins," Piniella said. "Toronto will probably be picked to win the (AL East) by a lot of people."

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