Daily Distractions: Remembering Dr. Lewis Yocum.

Lewis YocumDr. Lewis Yocum, the Angels team physician who died Saturday, worked at the Kerlan-Jobe Clinic for more than 30 years. Yocum didn’t invent Tommy John surgery – Frank Jobe did – but he made it faster.

“Some of the little refinements that we do, he helped develop them,” Jobe said. “For example, he’d drill the holes. At he time it took a while to get the holes just right took to get the lead sutures through those holes, he was able to find a way of doing that real slick, so that cut about 15 minutes off the operation time.”

And yet, when I asked Jobe to identify Yocum’s legacy, he went with something completely different. Click the link above to see what he said.

I talked to a lot of people about Dr. Yocum yesterday and the vast majority of what they said didn’t fit in my story for the newspaper. So here’s the rest, in bullet-point form for a Wednesday afternoon:
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Tommy Hanson’s head is clear, arm is ready for possible Friday start.

Tommy Hanson

Angels right-hander Tommy Hanson admitted Tuesday he wasn’t right mentally in his last start. (Associated Press)

Major League Baseball’s bereavement leave is limited to a maximum of seven days, but sometimes seven days isn’t enough.

That was the case for Angels pitcher Tommy Hanson, who made two starts after the death of his stepbrother in April. The first was in Oakland and Hanson pitched well, allowing one run in six innings. The second was at home against Baltimore on May 4 and it didn’t go so well. Hanson allowed seven hits and three runs in five innings, and the Angels went on to lose 5-4.

“Chris (Iannetta) came out and asked if I felt all right,” Hanson said. “Everyone said I looked like a zombie. I felt like one too. They wanted me to step away, get right and not rush anything.”

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Angels pitcher Sean Burnett returning to the disabled list with elbow inflammation.

Sean BurnettAngels pitcher Sean Burnett had surgery to remove bone spurs in his left elbow last October and is still dealing with the aftereffects.

An examination Tuesday revealed inflammation in the back of the elbow, and the Angels placed Burnett on the disabled list for the second time this season. Even though the source of pain has been different, both of Burnett’s DL stints have been related to the surgically repaired elbow, which has cost him 22 games already.

“It just all relates to that surgery I had,” he said. “My elbow’s got more movement to do. It’s inflaming itself, just reacting to that space. It’s used to those bone spurs being there.”

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Daily Distractions: Apparent blown call revisited; Angels’ initial budget was $5 million.

Did the blown call at first base in yesterday’s game matter?

It’s a valid enough question to be debating it today. Albert Pujols, who had three hits in the game, was on deck. He’s batted four times in his career against Dodgers pitcher Kenley Jansen and has one hit, a home run.

If the Angels indeed go on another winning streak today, and this stands as the only defeat in a stretch of wins, the play will loom large. A one-run loss decided by a blown call in the eighth inning? Not too much to hang your head about there.

Some more bullet points for a Tuesday morning:

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