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Angel Debuts - 1961 Part 2

The 3rd game of the inaugural Angel season was an epic, heartbreaking loss to the Dread Sox in Fenway Pahk in front of 5,289 fans (just in case someone tries to tell you anyone ever gave a flying frak about the Crud Sox before the invention of their Yankee rivalry by ESPN in 1999). The Angels got a 9th inning pinch hit homerun from Albie Pearson to bring the game to within one run, but could not move anyone else across and lost to the Pantyhose 3-2. This was the first Angels game ever that featured the Angels loading the bases and failing to score. That seems to have happened in just about every other Angels game since or am I imagining that?

The game saw the debut of outfielder Leon Wagner, the first Angel acquired in an in-season trade. Pitcher Ken McBride took the loss despite only surrendering 2 runs on 4 hits and 5 walks. Ken Hamlin entered the game as the franchise's first Pinch Runner (covering for the slow Steve Bilko) but failed to score. In the bottom of the same inning, a new battery made its Angel debut in relief: Pitcher Tom Morgan and Catcher Ed Sadowski. In the 9th inning, pinch hitters Leo Burke and Earl Averill would grounded out in back-to-back debuts to end the game.

17. Leon Wagner
18. Ken McBride
19. Ken Hamlin
20. Tom Morgan
21. Ed Sadowski
22. Leo Burke
23. Earl Averill

Ed Sadowski is buried at the Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Orange if you are feeling like paying your tributes the Angels 2nd-ever Catcher.

On April 20 (4-20, bro!), the Angels played their first ever game at Yankee Stadium. No debuts occurred in this game, but they played a doubleheader and veteran pitcher Ned Garver started for the Halos in the 2nd game. Ron Kline and Ted Bowsfield (the first Canadian-Born Angel) debuted in relief in this sweep at the hands of the soon-to-be-World Champion Yankees.

24. Ned Garver
25. Ron Kline
26. Ted Bowsfield

Next time anyone whines about the Angels' travel schedule consider this: A day/day doubleheader in Yankee Stadium on a Thursday with Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris followed by a DAY game in Detroit against Norm Cash and the Tigers. Here reliever Ray Semproch would make the first of his 2 total appearances as an Angel.

There were no Angel debuts for the remainder of the Detroit series nor at the home opener in L.A.'s Wrigley Field on April 27th. Former Brooklyn Dodger Rocky Bridges was a late-inning defensive replacement on April 29, Johnny James would debut in relief near the end of that same homestand on May 9 followed the next night by Ryne Duren striking out 5 Redstockings in 2 innings of relief on May 10.

27. Ray Semproch
28. Rocky Bridges
29. Johnny James
30. Ryne Duren

On May 12, slugging Top 100 Angel Lee Thomas debuted with a fly out as a late-inning pinch hitter. The late Art Fowler was the starting pitcher in an Angels' loss on May 28. Reliever Russ Heman was sold by the Indians to the Angels on June 5 and made his debut with an inning of scoreless relief on June 8 in Boston. In the second game of a doubleheader that day, Jim Donohue pitched 1/3 of an inning in relief. He had been acquired the day before for Jerry Casale in a trade with Detroit.

31. Lee Thomas
32. Art Fowler
33. Russ Heman
34. Jim Donohue

On June 19, the Cardinals sold Joe Koppe to the Angels for $1,000. He went 2 for 4 with a double, 2 runs scored and 1 batted in on June 20. Billy Moran was traded to the Angels from Toronto in the International League on June 22 for Russ Heman and Ken Hamlin. He walked as a pinch hitter as part of a 5-run inning on June 23. Detroit sold George Thomas to the Angels on June 26. He debuted at Shortstop on June 30 and had 3 RBI and 1 Run scored after going 2 for 4. Tom Satriano was signed as an amateur free agent on July 22 and grounded out as a pinch hitter on July 23.

35. Joe Koppe
36. Billy Moran
37. George Thomas
38. Tom Satriano

Satriano would remain an Angel through 1969.

Seven more Angel debuts - 3 of them Top 100 Angels - were yet to come in the final two months of the 1961 season.

1961, Part 1

1961, Part 3