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Abreu's Ninth Inning Atonement, Mathis Nearing Return. Halolinks.

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Joel Pineiro - Mr. Peepers.  You never see them in the same place at the same time...coincidence?
Joel Pineiro - Mr. Peepers. You never see them in the same place at the same time...coincidence?

Abreu's RBI single in 9th lifts Angels over Jays - Yahoo! Sports
No one in an Angels uniform felt worse than Bobby Abreu when the tying run scored in the top of the ninth, largely because he had dropped a flyball earlier. No one felt better than Abreu did in the bottom half, after he atoned for his mistake with the game-ending hit. His opposite-field RBI single with two out against Kelly Downs gave Los Angeles a 6-5 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday. "I wanted to be in that situation," Abreu said. "We played a very good game, and I’m the one who screwed up in the ninth with that flyball. It was my fault. I called for it late. I don’t have to blame anybody but myself. You don’t want to lose a game like that, so coming back from that and winning the game was perfect."

Okay, Bobby Abreu's ninth inning error was unfortunate, but it wouldn't have been a factor if the Angels bullpen, specifically Kevin Jepsen, had been able to hold the Jays once Pineiro had left the game. Here's a fun fact; the Angel relievers allowed twice as many hits in three innings (4) than Pineiro allowed in six (2). Video highlights: Matsui blasts a two-run shot in the sixth - It was nice to see Matsui's bat wake up (and in front of his parents), Toronto's shortstop Alex Gonzalez made a nice play in the bottom of the ninth with the bases load to keep the game tied. What was so nice about the play was Gonzalez's throw from his knee - Gonzalez makes a diving stop in the ninth. And finally, Bobby Abreu smacks a single to left to plate Juan Rivera, giving the Angels the win in the bottom of the ninth - Abreu ends the game with a walk-off single.

Slow-starting Angels poised to make their run - Chris Bahr - Sporting News
The Angels, Sporting News' preseason pick to win the AL West for the sixth time in the past seven seasons, are struggling to reach .500. But that also was the case at this time last season, when they won the division by 10 games. Expect a similar turnaround this season, and expect it to happen soon. Starting Friday, the Angels play 10 consecutive games against the Mariners and Royals.

We can only hope.


Torii Hunter's special road trip -
The Angels outfielder travels to Arkansas to watch his son receive high school diploma.Torii Hunter turned the high school graduation of his son, Cameron, in Little Rock, Ark., on Tuesday into a surprise party. "I didn't tell him I was coming," said the Angels center fielder, who missed Tuesday night's 8-3 victory over the Blue Jays. "He was shocked. When he saw me, he almost burst into tears. It was nice to see him walk across the stage [and get his diploma]."

The article also mentions Hunter will donate his one-day salary of $100,000 to charity. I think anyone would be willing to do without a day's pay to see one of their children graduate, regardless of the amount.

Mathis pleased with test swings for wrist -
Catcher Jeff Mathis, making bat-on-baseball contact for the first time since fracturing his right wrist on April 19, called Wednesday's activity a "big step" in the direction of returning to the Angels' active roster. "This was the first time I swung off the tee, and I'm very happy with what went on," Mathis said. "Gradually, I want to work my way into soft toss, then batting practice, and hopefully go somewhere and get this thing rolling. I hope in a week to 10 days to be in a game somewhere."

What happens if upon his return, Mathis continues to rake? I realize that would be a good problem to have, but who sits, Matsui or Napoli? The three factors; 1) Will Napoli stay hot?, 2) Will Matsui stay cold?, 3) Will Mathis remember how to hit?

News briefs: Judge approves MLB financing for Rangers -
A judge on Wednesday approved a multimillion-dollar Major League Baseball loan to keep the Texas Rangers afloat during bankruptcy proceedings, raising hopes that the team's stalled $575 million sale may happen this summer. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge D. Michael Lynn set a mid-June hearing on the Rangers' plan to pay the $75 million of the club's debt tied up in owner Tom Hicks' financially strapped ownership group. That would remove the team from the additional claims by creditors against Hicks Sports Group, which is not part of the bankruptcy filing.

Black gold! Texas Tea!

Ozzie Guillen goes on tirade against umpire Joe West -

West made the first balk call in the second inning and exchanged words with Guillen while the manager was in the White Sox dugout.West called another balk on Buehrle in the third, and the pitcher let his glove drop to the ground, which West said got him ejected. The left-hander had to be restrained by teammates after the umpire threw him out. "He's (an expletive)," Guillen said.

"an awfully nice guy" is what I think Guillen said about Cowboy Joe. Here's a theory...umpiring hasn't gotten worse the last few years, it's just with all this modern technology (internet, high-def cameras, etc.) the umpires shortcomings are more noticeable. This doesn't make the situation better, especially if there are ways to improve the game calling such as instant replay, but does highlight an area that baseball seems to have ignored for a long time.

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The Dark Night: Power outage hits Wrigley Field, delays game - Yahoo! Sports
Maybe the Ricketts family forgot to have the Com Ed bill transferred to their name. Maybe Lou Piniella just wanted to go home and "accidentally" tripped over the wrong cord Or maybe the baseball gods just fell 22 years behind schedule and finally got around to making their statement about night games at Wrigley Field. Whatever the case, everyone at the Friendly Confines was left to sip their suds in the dark on Wednesday night as an area power outage knocked out the lights on Wrigley Field's roof. The dimming occurred in the top of the fourth inning with the Dodgers leading the Cubs, 5-2, and the outage lasted around 18 minutes.

"That's the night that lights went out in Chicago. That's the night that they hung an innocent man." Or something like that.

N.J. man admits to vomit assault at Phillies game -
A 21-year-old New Jersey man pleaded guilty Tuesday to vomiting on another spectator and his 11-year-old daughter in the stands during a Philadelphia Phillies game. Clemmens stuck his fingers down his throat and vomited on Michael Vangelo, an off-duty Easton police captain, and one of Vangelo's daughters after Clemmens' companion was ejected from the park, Assistant District Attorney Patrick Doyle said.

This guy will probably get some sort of probation and community service sentence. I think the community service should include stadium restroom duty after the games...with a toothbrush...his toothbrush (I'm assuming a trog like this guy has a toothbrush).

May 27 - BR Bullpen
2003 - In Atlanta, Georgia, the U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals upholds a decision preventing the Florida attorney general from investigating Major League Baseball's 2001 attempt to eliminate two teams. The 11th circuit decision, by Judges Gerald B. Tjoflat, Susan H. Black and Richard W. Goldberg, is based on the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and state law rather than the sport's antitrust exemption and is considered to be a major victory by the baseball commissioner's office. (Didn't the plan include the contraction the Twins? And some kind of merger of the Angels and Athletics?)
Born on the same day-
1968 - Jeff Bagwell, infielder; All-Star
1968 - Frank Thomas, infielder; All-Star

I've missed you, Joel Pineiro:

Toronto Blue Jays
Jeremy Reed, LF 5 0 1 2 0 2 2 .200
Aaron Hill, 2B 4 0 0 0 0 1 2 .154
Adam Lind, DH 3 0 0 0 1 0 0 .228
Vernon Wells, CF 4 0 1 0 0 0 1 .299
Lyle Overbay, 1B 3 1 0 0 1 2 1 .200
Alex Gonzalez, SS 4 1 0 0 0 3 1 .263
Jose Bautista, RF 3 2 1 0 1 1 1 .246
John Buck, C 4 1 2 1 0 2 1 .269
Mike McCoy, PR 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .190
Jose Molina, C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .295
Edwin Encarnacion, 3B 3 0 1 2 1 0 1 .254
Totals 33 5 6 5 4 11
2B - Vernon Wells (17, Rodney), John Buck (12, Fuentes), Edwin Encarnacion (4, Jepsen)
RBI - Jeremy Reed 2 (3), John Buck (26), Edwin Encarnacion 2 (18)
2-OUT RBI - Jeremy Reed 2 (3), Edwin Encarnacion 2 (5)
Team LOB - 5
Outfield Assists - Jose Bautista 1

Los Angeles Angels
Erick Aybar, SS 3 1 0 0 2 0 1 .242
Howard Kendrick, 2B 5 0 1 1 0 1 3 .257
Bobby Abreu, RF 3 0 1 2 1 1 0 .272
Torii Hunter, CF 4 0 0 0 0 2 1 .278
Kendry Morales, 1B 3 1 1 0 0 1 1 .286
Hideki Matsui, DH 4 1 2 2 0 1 1 .238
Mike Napoli, C 4 0 1 0 0 2 2 .265
Maicer Izturis, 3B 3 1 1 0 1 0 2 .267
Michael Ryan, LF 2 1 1 1 1 0 0 .188
Reggie Willits, LF 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .207
a- Juan Rivera, PH 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 .235
Totals 31 6 8 6 6 8
a-was walked intentionally for Willits in the 9th
2B - Howard Kendrick (11, Morrow), Mike Napoli (9, Downs), Michael Ryan (2, Morrow)
HR - Hideki Matsui (6, R. Lewis)
SF - Bobby Abreu (2)
RBI - Howard Kendrick (22), Bobby Abreu 2 (25), Hideki Matsui 2 (24), Michael Ryan (2)
2-OUT RBI - Bobby Abreu (8), Michael Ryan (1)
CS - Mike Napoli (1, 2nd base by Morrow/Buck)
Team LOB - 7
DP - Izturis-Kendrick-Morales
E - Bobby Abreu (5, Dropped fly)
Toronto Blue Jays
Brandon Morrow 5 3 3 3 4 6 0 6.66
Rommie Lewis 0 2 2 2 0 0 1 3.60
Shawn Camp 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 2.73
Jason Frasor 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 4.35
Scott Downs (L,1-4) 1.2 2 1 1 2 0 0 2.66
IBB - J. Rivera by Scott Downs, by Aybar
HBP - Morales (by Brandon Morrow)
Pitches-Strikes - Brandon Morrow 96-54, Rommie Lewis 5-3, Shawn Camp 14-10, Jason Frasor 9-6, Scott Downs 38-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brandon Morrow 4-4, Jason Frasor 1-1, Scott Downs 2-3
Batters Faced - Brandon Morrow 22, Rommie Lewis 2, Shawn Camp 3, Jason Frasor 3, Scott Downs 9

Los Angeles Angels
Joel Pineiro 6 2 3 3 4 6 0 4.95
Kevin Jepsen (H,11) 1 2 1 1 0 2 0 5.82
Fernando Rodney (H,5) 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 3.20
Brian Fuentes (BS,3; W,2-1) 1 1 1 0 0 2 0 5.40
Pitches-Strikes - Joel Pineiro 102-65, Kevin Jepsen 19-14, Fernando Rodney 12-8, Brian Fuentes 22-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joel Pineiro 10-1, Kevin Jepsen 1-0
Batters Faced - Joel Pineiro 23, Kevin Jepsen 5, Fernando Rodney 4, Brian Fuentes 5
Game Information
Attendance - 34504
Game Time - 3:02
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Jim Reynolds, First Base - Bill Welke, Second Base - Mike DiMuro, Third Base - Tim Welke