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Matsui Makes a Mark, Weaver Wins Opener. Halolinks

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We Fly Flags.
We Fly Flags.

Angels 6, Twins 3 -  FOX Sports on MSN
Hideki Matsui is fitting in just fine on the West Coast. Although he has a new uniform and a sweet new surfside home in Huntington Beach, he kept all of his usual dramatic flair at the plate. Matsui drove in the go-ahead run in the fifth and added an eighth-inning homer in his dynamic Angels debut, and Jered Weaver pitched six strong innings for Los Angeles in a 6-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Monday night.

Good start to the season, and hopefully an indication of how 2010 will play out...good pitching and timely hitting, with a little extra punch.  (more reaps after the break)

Kazmir 'very surprised' to start on DL - angelsbaseball.com
"I felt like I was ready [to face the A's]," Kazmir said, having thrown 77 pitches in a camp game in Arizona on Sunday and then 10 more in the bullpen. "At the same time, I didn't get that many [Cactus League] innings. I have a little more time to work on things." Assuming all goes well in a tuneup on Friday for high Class A Rancho Cucamonga, Kazmir will miss only one turn in the Angels' rotation.

I've often wondered how much input a player has in making the decision to go on the DL.  Apparently from this article, Kazmir had nothing to do with it.

Team Reports - CBSSports.com
DH Hideki Matsui became the 25th player in Angels history to hit a home run in his first game with the team. Before Matsui, the most recent player to do it was 1B Kendry Morales, who hit a homer in his major league debut on May 23, 2006. Matsui and Morales hit back-to-back home runs in the eighth inning of Monday's victory.

Fun facts to start your day!

MORE LINKS AFTER THE BREAK...

Angels start season in orderly fashion - LA Daily News
The Angels were so by-the-book in their season opener Monday that their lips probably were moving as they proceeded. The top of the order set the table and the middle of the order drove in the runs, before putting on their own late power display in a 6-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins in front of a sellout crowd of 43,504. Kendry Morales and Hideki Matsui each had RBI singles early in the game before delivering back-to-back home runs in the eighth inning to give the Angels all the insurance they would need. Matsui put the Angels on top for good in the fifth inning with his two-out RBI single. "Anybody always wants to start off the season on a good note," Matsui said through an interpreter. "I'm just happy I was able to do that. Hopefully I will be able to extend this a little more."

Angels get the season started with a big bang - latimes.com
Mike Scioscia calls it "batter's box offense," which seems odd -- what other kind of offense is there in baseball? -- until you realize the manager uses it to describe runs generated with bats instead of the Angels' usual method of operation, speed and aggressive base running.The Angels slugged three solo home runs, including consecutive, eighth-inning shots by Hideki Matsui and Kendry Morales against reliever Jose Mijares that turned a tight, one-run game into a 6-3 Angels lead.

Angels 6, Twins 3: Missed openings on Opening Day - Twinkie Town
Much has been made about the Twins' off-season signings, but it was a new Angel that made the difference on Opening Night. Designated hitter Hideki Matsui, playing his first game in Anaheim, singled home the go-ahead run in the fifth inning, then homered in the eighth to lead the Angels past Minnesota, 6-3.

SBN's Twins site.  It might be fun to drop in on the other SBN sites to see their take on the game.  This recap is rather bland, but then, have you ever been to Minnesota?

Angels' Bobby Wilson is emotionally tested - latimes.com
While most teammates closed out spring training and traveled to Southern California last Wednesday, Wilson remained in Arizona that night to watch a 16-year-old right-hander from the Chicago area pitch in a high school tournament game in Scottsdale, Ariz. And it nearly brought Wilson to tears. The name of the pitcher: Henry Gigeous, the half brother of Nick Adenhart, the 22-year-old Angels pitcher who was killed along with two friends in an automobile accident last April 9. "The similarities between him and Nick . . . oh, man, just watching him warm up was heart-wrenching for me, because I got to see that so often through the minor leagues," said Wilson, a close friend of Adenhart's.

Angels mix myth and magic in opening-day win - latimes.com
The Angels have taken heat for annexing Los Angeles to their name. But if media interest is any measure, they are now the Hideki Matsui Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Dividends were immediate. In the fifth, scored tied, 3-3, Matsui hit an 0-2 pitch into right field, driving in a run for a 4-3 lead. There were 104 credential requests from Japanese media outlets, which is further indication of the genius of Arte Moreno's ownership. Calculating $10 a head for meals in the press box, for 104 reporters, for 81 home games, plus playoffs, brings about $100,000. It wasn't all that long ago that Koufax and Drysdale held out for about that. All this talk about how to create new revenue, and Moreno out-slicks them all.

First M's impressions: You're gonna love Figgins - Seattlepi
If you can't beat 'em, steal 'em: Seattle took down the A's in Monday night's debut, but you almost felt like this one was also a shot across the bow of the Los Angeles Angels with a pair of former Halos setting the tone. After telling manager Don Wakamatsu he wanted to hit third, Casey Kotchman drove in four runs -- including a game-winning two-RBI single with two out in the top of the ninth -- to highlight a terrific debut. And Chone Figgins? What's not to love about the little guy, who self-manufactured a pair of runs by walking, stealing second and moving to third twice in the early innings on bad throws by catcher Kurt Suzuki.

Championship odds -  FOX Sports on MSN
Odds to win the World Series - Los Angeles Angels 18/1

2010 Baseball Millionaires, List -  FOX Sports on MSN
The 2010 salaries for the 433 major league baseball players on opening day rosters and disabled lists earning $1 million or more.

Opening Day:

Minnesota Twins
Denard Span, CF 5 0 0 0 0 3 1 .000
Orlando Hudson, 2B 3 0 1 0 0 0 0 .333
Joe Mauer, C 4 0 1 0 0 1 1 .250
Justin Morneau, 1B 3 1 1 0 1 1 3 .333
Michael Cuddyer, RF 3 0 1 0 1 1 1 .333
Jason Kubel, DH 3 0 0 0 1 1 2 .000
Delmon Young, LF 4 2 2 2 0 0 4 .500
J.J. Hardy, SS 4 0 1 0 0 1 1 .250
Nick Punto, 3B 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 .000
   a- Jim Thome, PH 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
    Brendan Harris, 3B 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
Totals 32 3 7 3 3 8    
a-grounded out for Punto in the 7th
Batting
2B - Orlando Hudson (1, Jer. Weaver)
HR - Delmon Young (1, Jer. Weaver)
SF - Nick Punto (1)
RBI - Delmon Young 2 (2), Nick Punto (1)
2-OUT RBI - Delmon Young 2 (2)
SB - Delmon Young (1, 2nd base off Jer. Weaver/Mathis)
Team LOB - 7
Los Angeles Angels
Erick Aybar, SS 3 2 2 0 1 0 0 .667
Bobby Abreu, RF 4 0 0 0 0 0 3 .000
Torii Hunter, CF 2 1 0 0 2 1 1 .000
Hideki Matsui, DH 4 1 2 2 0 0 2 .500
Kendry Morales, 1B 4 1 2 2 0 0 2 .500
Juan Rivera, LF 4 0 1 1 0 0 0 .250
Howard Kendrick, 2B 4 0 1 0 0 0 2 .250
Brandon Wood, 3B 4 0 0 0 0 3 1 .000
Jeff Mathis, C 4 1 1 1 0 1 1 .250
Totals 33 6 9 6 3 5    
Batting
HR - Hideki Matsui (1, Mijares), Kendry Morales (1, Mijares), Jeff Mathis (1, Baker)
RBI - Hideki Matsui 2 (2), Kendry Morales 2 (2), Juan Rivera (1), Jeff Mathis (1)
2-OUT RBI - Hideki Matsui (1), Kendry Morales (1), Juan Rivera (1)
SB - Howard Kendrick (1, 2nd base off Neshek/Mauer)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Aybar-Kendrick-Morales
 
Minnesota Twins
Scott Baker (L,0-1) 4.2 5 4 4 3 3 1 7.71
Jesse Crain 1.2 0 0 0 0 1 0 0.00
Jose Mijares 0.2 3 2 2 0 0 2 27.00
Pat Neshek 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0.00
WP - Scott Baker (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Scott Baker 92-57, Jesse Crain 21-14, Jose Mijares 16-12, Pat Neshek 10-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Baker 2-9, Jesse Crain 2-2
Batters Faced - Scott Baker 22, Jesse Crain 5, Jose Mijares 5, Pat Neshek 4
Los Angeles Angels
Jered Weaver (W,1-0) 6 5 3 3 2 6 1 4.50
Kevin Jepsen (H,1) 1 2 0 0 0 1 0 0.00
Fernando Rodney (H,1) 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0.00
Brian Fuentes (S,1) 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0.00
HBP - Hudson (by Kevin Jepsen)
Pitches-Strikes - Jered Weaver 94-57, Kevin Jepsen 29-19, Fernando Rodney 10-3, Brian Fuentes 10-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jered Weaver 7-5, Kevin Jepsen 1-1, Fernando Rodney 1-1
Batters Faced - Jered Weaver 25, Kevin Jepsen 6, Fernando Rodney 3, Brian Fuentes 3
 
Game Information
Attendance - 43504