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MONDAY HALOLINKS: Scott Kazmir Still Looking

Up next for Angels: Monday at New York Yankees --
Jered Weaver vs. Joba Chamberlain

Torii Hunter, Scott Kazmir lead Angels past White Sox --
"He's our closer," Scioscia said of Fuentes. "The situation today, when Jepsen starts the ninth, it's purely matchups. The matchup leading off the ninth was good for us. "And as soon as those lefties started coming off the bench, it was a good time for Brian." That's a new approach for Scioscia. When Francisco Rodriguez saved a record 62 games for the Angels last season, only seven of those came in games in which he pitched less than an inning. And in Troy Percival's last full season as the Angels' closer in 2004, only four of his 33 saves lasted fewer than three outs.

Angels-Yankees Preview - FOX Sports on MSN
The two best teams in the AL meet Monday night when the New York Yankees host the Los Angeles Angels in a makeup game that could help determine home-field advantage throughout the postseason. New York (92-52) leads the AL East by seven games over Boston while Los Angeles (86-56) is six ahead of Texas in the West. The Yankees hold a five-game lead over the Angels for home-field advantage throughout the playoffs and the right to choose whether they want an extra off day in an AL division series.

Team Reports -
Sunday's matchup between Angels LHP Scott Kazmir and White Sox LHP Mark Buehrle was a repeat of the matchup from Buehrle's perfect game on July 23 in Chicago. Kazmir started for the Tampa Bay Rays and took the loss after allowing five runs on five hits and three walks in six innings.

Video highlights from 9/13/09:

Angels sweep the White Sox -
Rewind Recap: A seventh-inning solo jack from Torii Hunter ended up being the decisive stroke as the Angels took the three-game series (didn't the Angels lose on Saturday?)

Kazmir's pickoff nabs Nix to end the inning -
Scott Kazmir starts the pickoff by throwing to first, Kendry Morales throws to second to get Jayson Nix to end the inning

Izturis brings one in to tie it at two -
Maicer Izturis hits a single to left field, bringing in Howard Kendrick to tie the game at 2 in the third

Hunter's hammering homer puts the Halos up -
Torii Hunter slaps a leadoff homer in the seventh inning to put the Angels in front

Angels Extra: Scott Kazmir - takes a look at Kazmir's performance since arriving in Los Angeles from Tampa Bay

Team Reports II -
3B Chone Figgins "has been an Iron Man for us," according to manager Mike Scioscia, but he gave the iron man a day off Sunday. It was just the third time in 142 games this season that Figgins has sat out. But there have been signs that he is wearing down recently. He is 8-for-38 (.211) in September and was thrown out in his three previous steal attempts before getting his 40th of the season Saturday.

Scioscia and Fuentes have closed-door meeting -
Manager Mike Scioscia met with closer Brian Fuentes in his office with the door closed for 25 minutes before Sunday's game. Afterward, Scioscia said the discussion centered on Fuentes' mechanics and he dismissed the notion that they talked about the veteran reliever's role.

Previewing The Vladimir Guerrero Market -
Vladimir Guerrero earned over $80MM over the course of his last contract. He won't sign for nearly as much when he hits free agency again this winter, but he could appeal to clubs looking for a veteran bat. After all, Vladdy hasn't posted an OPS below .800 since 1996. This year, he's hitting .298/.338/.467, but his strikeout rate has risen and his walk rate has fallen. Guerrero remains the free-swinger he's always been; in fact, he swings at a higher percentage of pitches than any major leaguer with at least 250 plate appearances.

Metamorphosis is complete - Angels Unplugged - Los Angeles Times
It is as if the metamorphosis is complete. From pitching strong, to struggling to put together a rotation, back to having one of the best five-man staffs in the game. From creating runs, to scoring in bunches, back to winning with low run totals again.

Angels embark on crucial trip -
It's a difficult trip, travel-wise, as the Angels have no days off before or after their road trip due to the makeup game with the Yankees on Monday. But Scioscia said his club should be fine despite playing 50 games in 52 days, going back to Aug. 14.

Angels: Hunter still errorless in CF -
Hunter hasn't committed an error in centerfield in a regular season game since Aug. 31, 2007 vs. Kansas City, a span of 259 games.

Versatile Izturis takes spin at hot corner - News
"The fact that he's moving around for us a lot isn't a utility role, it's more of a versatility role," Scioscia said. "He's getting a lot of playing time at a lot of positions and he's playing very well."

Q&A with John Lackey, who recently won 100th MLB game - Abilene Reporter News
Q. You’ve now had eight major league seasons and your a free agent after this one. Is that something that weighs on you at all? A. Honestly, I had thought about it a little bit early on in the season and it might have affected me a little bit. But I came to a point where I’m just going to help this team win this year and just worry about what I can handle this year and let the offseason take care of itself.

Abreu has made Angels more patient - News
t's impossible to quantify Abreu's exact effect on the other hitters, but Angels manager Mike Scioscia did say he noticed that players seem to flock to Abreu for advice. "Players gravitate toward Bobby," Scioscia said. "They're aware of his knowledge, what he's accomplished in the game, and they want to absorb what they can from him."

2009 Postseason Ticket Information -

September 14 - BR Bullpen
Events, births and deaths that occurred on September 14.
1978 - The Angels score 13 unearned runs in the 9th inning to cap a 16 - 1 win over the Rangers.
1994 - The remainder of the baseball season is canceled by acting commissioner Bud Selig after 34 days of the players' strike. There will be no World Series for the 1st time since 1904.
2003 - Homering in his final at-bat, Vladimir Guerrero hits for 'Le Carrousel' at Montreal's Olympic Stadium. Facing Mets' southpaw Tom Glavine, the Expos right fielder doubled (2nd), singled (3rd) and hit a triple (5th) and completed the sixth cycle in team history going deep off Dan Wheeler (7th).

Magic Number: 15