Tuesday Halolinks: Josh Hamilton nearing return, Grant Green may have arrived

Jeff Gross

Josh Hamilton should be in the Angels line-up later this week.

Today's Halolinks are going to be short and sweet since I'm sitting at a relative stranger's home, at their kitchen counter, writing these words.  The difference between Wisconsin and Arizona is much like the difference between Anita Bryant (for those of you old enough to remember her) and Miley Cyrus (for those young enough to have heard of her).  Unlike being in the company of Miley, I think I could get used to hanging out here.  Anyway, I'm going to try to get to this afternoon's game against the Mariners, but until then, here are today's Halolinks:

  • Over at the mothership, the Angels' MLB page is full of information.  Alden Gonzalez rounds up some quick info on Hamilton, Weaver and Sean Burnett: Hamilton progressing toward return with agility drills - angels.com.  "Josh Hamilton did agility drills on the field Sunday, planned to do straight-ahead sprints on Monday and could make his spring debut as early as Thursday, though the Angels' outfielder doesn't want to put a precise time frame on his recovery."  It's interesting that Weaver wasn't discouraged by his outing yesterday, and feels it's just another step in getting ready for the season: "Obviously a lot of pitches," Weaver said after a 78-pitch, 4 1/3-inning outing, "but the location and stuff will come in the next couple starts."   Mike Butcher is, for lack of a better word, strange:  "Sean Burnett stood on a bullpen mound on Sunday and fired 30 fastballs to a catcher in a crouched position, but it wasn't his first bullpen session, per se. "It looks like a bullpen," Angels pitching coach Mike Butcher said, "but it's not a bullpen. … He's still building into a bullpen."  If it looks like a bullpen, and smells like a bullpen, why isn't it a bullpen?
  • The LA Times has a limit on the number of article you can read for free on their website, but for some reason, some of their stuff shows up in other places.  Here's an article from Mike Digiovanna found on the Miami Herald website: Grant Green is trying to land utility infield spot with Angels - MiamiHerald.com. "Green looked good at shortstop Saturday, handling five grounders flawlessly. But he did not get a chance Monday at third base, a position he has played sparingly but is working extensively at this spring. "I'm getting used to the view off the bat, and the throw across the diamond is a different angle," Green said. "It's more of a reaction position, but as long as you get in a good ready step, you're going to be fine." McDonald is clearly the best defender of the utility candidates, but if the Angels prefer more of an offensive threat in that spot, Green would have a clear edge. He doubled and singled in four at-bats Monday and is hitting .429 (nine for 21) with five doubles and three runs batted in. "The first thing for anyone in that job is the ability to play shortstop and bring some versatility," Manager Mike Scioscia said. "Once guys show that, you can look at offense to see if there's a plus or minus there. Grant can generate bat speed and leverage the ball well, and he's looking strong on the left side of the infield."
  • Jered Weaver tosses four as Matt Long, Angels tee off on Indians | angels.com: News
    Long, who is battling for a spot in Mike Scioscia's outfield, continued a monster spring with a 4-for-5 day. He doubled in the second inning against Indians starter Danny Salazar, bunted for an RBI single with two outs in the third, tripled in the fifth off Trevor Bauer and added a single in the ninth. Weaver made his longest outing of the spring, going 4 1/3 innings and giving up three runs on five hits while striking out five and walking two.
  • The Angels signed a pitcher (not a belly itcher) who will probably start the season in Triple A: Joe Martinez Stats, Video Highlights, Photos, Bio - MLB.com.  They also sent a couple guys down to their minor league camp: Transactions - angels.com.
    Los Angeles Angels sent Robert Carson outright to Salt Lake Bees.
    Los Angeles Angels sent John Hester outright to Salt Lake Bees.
  • See, having front row access isn't always the best thing:
  • The Ervin Santana saga continues: Braves Could Make Run At Ervin Santana - MLBTradeRumors.com.  "7:26pm: After throwing a 2-inning simulated game today, Santana may still wait a day or two before choosing a destination, reports Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes.com (Twitter links, in Spanish). The Braves are indeed very interested, with financial concerns the main limitation. Meanwhile, the Royals have put in a call on Santana. The Blue Jays and Orioles have standing offers out, Rojas adds."
  • I don't think he's the greatest pitcher on the market, and I doubt he's even worth what the Cubs are going to get for him, but adding a starter for this year is still one of the most important moves the club can do prior to the beginning of the season.  The Angels probably don't have anything the Cubs would want as far as minor league talent, but it doesn't appear they're even in the hunt: Even Samardzija knows he's on the block.  "He knows it. So do the more than a dozen scouts who attended Samardzija's third start of the spring, including Toronto, Arizona, Minnesota, Pittsburgh and Baltimore, all teams with potential pitching needs."
  • Count me as one of those who thought pitchers came back a little stronger after TJ surgery: MLB Pitchers Don’t Regain Performance Level after Tommy John Surgery.  ""There’s been a perception that the surgery will make you better. Our findings debunk that perception. Eighty to 90 percent of major league pitchers will get back to pitching at the major league level but they just won’t be as effective as they were before injury."

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