Chris Iannetta says finish proves the importance of every game


Chris Iannetta

Chris Iannetta/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Angels


Angels catcher Chris Iannetta had a very good observation Monday while cleaning out his locker in the Angels’ clubhouse. It came a day after the Angels lost 9-2 at Texas. They needed a victory in that game to force a one-game playoff with Houston for the right to play in the American League wild-card game Tuesday at New York.

“It was definitely an exciting finish, but it obviously didn’t turn out the way we wanted it to,” Iannetta said. “That’s why every game through the course of a season is important – whether it’s the first game or the last game. At least we had the opportunity to write our own destiny at the end. We just fell a little bit short.”

The Angels won nine of their last 12 games to put themselves in position to make the postseason, but it didn’t happen.

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Owner Arte Moreno suggested Billy Eppler have a glass of wine

Mike Scioscia, left, and new general manager Billy Eppler at Monday’s news conference announcing the hiring of Eppler as general manager/Photo by Nick Ut, Associated Press


Owner Arte Moreno on Monday was helping play host to the news conference formally announcing the hiring of Billy Eppler as the team’s 12th general manager. Moreno was talking about the process and mentioned a moment when he, Eppler and other Angels executives were having dinner recently to discuss the job.

“He (Eppler) was a little nervous and he said, ‘I’ll just drink water.’ ” I said, ‘You better have a glass of wine,’ ” Moreno said, drawing lots of laughs from reporters and family members of Eppler.


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Angels hire Billy Eppler to become their 12th general manager

Billy Eppler, left, has been named Angels general manager/Photo courtesy of New York Daily News


The Angels on Sunday night announced they have hired longtime New York Yankees executive Billy Eppler to become their general manager.

Bill Stoneman had been interim general manager after Jerry Dipoto resigned his post in early July after a beef with manager Mike Scioscia.

Eppler had been in the Yankees front office for 11 years, the past four as assistant general manager to general manager Brian Cashman. He also served as vice-president this season. Eppler, 40, is a native of San Diego.

Eppler becomes the 12th general manager in club history. He will report directly to owner Arte Moreno.

“We used a lot of time, energy and research into the decision to fill this very critical position,” Moreno said in a statement.  “We interviewed several quality individuals throughout the process.  In the end, Billy’s experience in the areas of scouting, player development and major-league operations, in addition to his organizational and communication skills,  were primary reasons for our decision.

“He is energetic, creative and has a tremendous passion for the game.  We look forward to him joining the organization and making his impact felt in short order.”

Eppler is stoked to get this opportunity.

“I cannot adequately express how excited I am for the opportunity Arte Moreno and the Angels have given me,” he said.  “The Angels are committed to championship standards. They are committed to being a perennial contender, and many of the pieces are already in place for that to occur.  I look forward to a collaborative effort as we look to enhance and advance every phase of the baseball operations department.

“This is an organization with a tremendous amount of talent on and off the field, and I am excited to begin the next chapter of Angels baseball.”

The Angels’ season ended Sunday with a 9-2 loss at Texas. The Angels needed to win that game to force a one-game playoff Monday at Houston that would have decided the second wild-card team in the American League.




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Angels’ season is over as they fall 9-2 at Texas, which wins AL West

Albert Pujols

Albert Pujols/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Angels


The Angels needed two things to happen Sunday in order to force a one-game playoff Monday at Houston to determine the second wild-card team for the postseason.

The Angels had to win at Texas and have Houston lose at Arizona. Houston lost 5-3, but the Angels also lost, 9-2, after leading 2-1 after the first inning. That meant Houston won the second wild-card spot.

The Rangers, who clinched the AL West with their victory, scored twice in the fifth and six times in the seventh to blow open what would be the final game of the season for the Angels.

The Angels got a double by Mike Trout and 2-run home run by Albert Pujols off Rangers starter Cole Hamels in the first inning. But Hamels allowed only one more hit – a double by Shane Victorino in the second – while pitching a complete game.

The Angels finished 85-77 and won nine of their last 12 games to put themselves in position to get into the playoffs.

“I was inspired by these guys,” manager Mike Scioscia said during a post-game television interview on Fox Sports West.




I was inspired by these guys.

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