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Angel Debuts - 1971

Opening Day was a night game at Anaheim Stadium. Catcher Jerry Moses, part of a big trade with the Red Sox in the offseason, made his Angel debut behind the plate in the top of the first catching veteran Halo Clyde Wright. The third out of the top of the first was a flyball to Centerfielder Ken Berry, part of a big offseason trade with the White Sox. The star-crossed superstar Tony Conigliaro was the centerpiece of the Boston trade, batting cleanup in his opening day Angel debut. Veteran John Stephenson, a serviceable backup Catcher, pinch hit for the pitcher and flied out in the 8th inning of the opening day loss to Kansas City.

196. Jerry Moses
197. Ken Berry
198. Tony Conigliaro
199. John Stephenson
200. Syd O'Brien
201. Jeff Torborg

The 200th Angel was infielder Syd O'Brien, who started a Sunday day game in Milwaukee on April 11. He grounded into a double play in his first at bat in the top of the first inning. Veteran Catcher Jeff Torborg had been sold to the Angels during Spring Training and, in the same game, he crouched behind the plate with a Halo for the first time in the bottom of the First inning.

In the offseason, the Angels traded Greg Garret to the Cincinnati Reds for pitcher Jim Maloney. The Right Hander took over for Tom Murphy in the 6th inning of a losing shutout at home against Oakland. The A's were in town 2 nights later when offseason acquisition Billy Wynne made his Angel debut in relief, striking out 3 in an inning and a third. He would only appear in two more games with the Angels, his final major league appearance being April 30. The Cubs had traded Archie Reynolds to the Angels in July of 1970, but it was not until May 9 of 1971 that the Right Hander entered a major league game wearing the Halo. He threw two scoreless innings in his first of 15 games as an Angel.

202. Jim Maloney
203. Billy Wynne
204. Archie Reynolds
205. Andy Hassler

Pitcher Andy Hassler made his major league debut in an Angel uniform on May 30, starting a game on the mound in Yankee Stadium. He would not factor into the decision and would end up back with the Halos on a 2nd tour of duty in 1980, eventually appearing in the 1982 LCS with the club. In between he had some good years with some great Kansas City Royals clubs in the mid-1970s. Righty Fred Lasher pitched in one of his 2 games as an Angel in County Stadium, Milwaukee, debuting on June 23 in the bottom of the 8th and pitching a scoreless inning with the Brew Crew way ahead. Short Stop Bruce Christensen made his major league debut on a Saturday night in Anaheim against Jim Palmer and the Baltimore Orioles. He had a sacrifice hit and was involved in two of the Angels' four defensive double plays in the Angels 10-3 victory that night.

206. Fred Lasher
207. Bruce Christensen
208. Billy Parker
209. Rudy Meoli
210. Art Kusnyer

Two Angels made their major league debuts in the same game on September 9. Billy Parker was the starting 2nd baseman and struck out in his first major league at-bat. In the 9th inning, Rudy Meoli came in as a pinch-runner but was out on a fielder's choice. Despite that, the Angels scored two runs to send the game into extras. In the bottom of the 12th, with 2 out and nobody on, Billy Parker hit a walk-off homerun. The final debut of the 1971 season saw Catcher Art Kusnyer take over for Jeff Torborg in the top of the 8th inning, getting a hit in his first at-bat as an Angel. Kusnyer would go on to be the bullpen coach of the World Champion 1989 Oakland A's and 2005 White Sox. But for the 76-86 1971 Angels, Parker's walk-off homerun was pretty much the highlight of the year.