Angels manager Mike Scioscia was asked, naturally, about the play that ended the Angels’ 5-0 loss to the Houston Astros on Friday night.
Josh Hamilton was doubled off first base when he rounded second, and reached third base, after Mark Trumbo popped out in foul territory with one out. Astros catcher Jason Castro lobbed a throw from just in front of the Angels dugout to second baseman Jose Altuve, who was covering first base, for the rare 2-4 double play.
Was that a microcosm of everything that’s gone wrong in a 2-8 season?
“No. That’s obviously a bad play,” Scioscia said. “I don’t think it’s a microcosm because I think there’s some good things that are happening. I think these guys are battling hard — occasionally too hard, but you’re not going to sum up the first 10 games with that one play.”
Still, the play stood in stark contrast to something the Angels had been doing right. Before the game, Scioscia praised his club for continuing to work hard even when the scoreboard was not in their favor late in the game.
Still, Scioscia said, this was different.
“That’s a mental mistake,” he said. “As perfect as players try to play, as hard as they try to play, unfortunately mental mistakes are going to creep into the scenario. We’ve seen it, guys on other teams. And Josh is accountable. He knows he messed up.”
So it’s a random occurrence, independent of what the scoreboard or the standings reflect?
“I don’t believe that that play’s related. Is that because we’re not getting good starting pitching, or holding leads, because we forgot the outs?”
Or all of it?
“It’s a mental mistake. It happens. It’s obviously ugly when it happens, but we’re going to move on. That’s it.”