Will Hank Conger‘s wild arm behind the plate Wednesday cripple his chances of making the Angels?
Manager Mike Scioscia didn’t lay down a red carpet to his doghouse for Conger, who nearly decapitated Jered Weaver on a throw to second base Wednesday. Neither did Scioscia lie about where Conger stands right now.
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Although Pablo Sandoval had pretty much run out of steam by the time he got to third, Kung Fu Panda kept on chugging.
The San Francisco Giants’ hefty slugger scored the go-ahead run and maybe burned off a few ounces of flab along the way, getting the defending champions’ spring off to a rollicking start.
Ryan Vogelsong pitched two scoreless innings, Sandoval lumbered home on Jackson Williams‘ double, and the Giants opened Cactus League play with a 4-1 victory over a Los Angeles Angels split squad Saturday.
The last time Sandoval was in a major league game, he wrapped up the World Series MVP award in San Francisco’s sweep of Detroit last October. Although he played in Venezuela’s professional league this winter and will play in the World Baseball Classic soon, he acknowledges he’s a few weeks and several pounds away from recapturing his postseason form.
“It looked like home plate was running away from me,” Sandoval said.
Bobby Wilson signed as a free agent with the New York Yankees, leaving Chris Iannetta, Hank Conger and John Hester as the only catchers on the Angels’ 40-man roster. Who will back up Iannetta? Will they sign a veteran backup like Southern California native Matt Treanor? These are two of the key questions facing a team with a loaded starting lineup and several options for filling out its bench.