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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Shane Victorino not in love with banging head-on into walls

Shane Victorino

Shane Victorino/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Angels


Shane Victorino was funny on Saturday when discussing his head-on smash into the left-field wall Friday while chasing a drive off the bat of the Texas Rangers’ Shin-Soo Choo in the top of the seventh inning of the Angels’ 5-2 victory. Victorino couldn’t make the catch and the ball went for an RBI triple.

Victorino was asked if he gets a kick out of running into walls and trying to knock them down.

“No, no, I don’t fall in love with all that kind of stuff,” he told reporters. “That stuff don’t excite me, banging on the wall or taking on a wall. It’s catching the baseball that I care about. Like last night, the biggest thing for me was not catching the ball. It hit my glove.

“The golden rule is to catch it. That’s the kind of stuff that is more upsetting to me than banging into walls.”

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Mike Scioscia: Kole Calhoun could be best right-fielder in AL

Kole Calhoun

Kole Calhoun/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Angels,


Never put it past a manager to exaggerate the talents of one of his players. But Angels manager Mike Scioscia doesn’t seem to be dealing in hyperbole when he talks about his right-fielder, Kole Calhoun.

Calhoun on Saturday night made a spectacular fully laid-out diving catch of a line drive hit by the Texas Rangers’ Rougned Odor in the eighth inning of the Rangers’ 7-6 victory. Texas had just gone ahead and there were two runners on when Calhoun came through. It wasn’t the first time Calhoun did that, it probably won’t the the last.

With that ability as well as a terrific throwing arm, Scioscia calls Calhoun one of the best corner outfielders in the American League. Perhaps the best right-fielder.

“I think he’s as good as there is in right field, I think he’s gold-glove caliber,” Scioscia said. “I don’t think there’s a right-fielder that stops the first and third like he can, not in the way he charges the ball with his arm and his accuracy.

“And I think that when you have a guy like Mike Trout in center, I think it really enhances what guys can do on the wings and he takes advantage of that. I don’t know if there’s a better defensive right-fielder that we’ve seen than Kole.”

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Josh Hamilton hasn’t, and won’t, apologize to the Angels

Josh Hamilton

Josh Hamilton/Photo courtesy of Texas Rangers,


There have been no shortage of people who believe Josh Hamilton should have taken more responsibility for the events this past off-season that resulted in him being traded back to the Texas Rangers, with the Angels taking on a large part of his large salary.

Surrounded by reporters Friday upon his return to Angel Stadium with the Texas Rangers, Hamilton explained his reasoning when asked if he followed Step No. 8 in the 12-step program that basically says one should make amends with all he or she hurt through addiction.

“You know, I did reach out a couple different times, right after the incident, right after the (shoulder) surgery and never got a response as far as from ownership.” said Hamilton, who in February ratted himself out, telling Major League Baseball officials he had relapsed on drugs and alcohol.

“So, you know, all you can do is try. I tried to do my part and, you know, even when I was here I tried to do my part, reaching out to (former general manager Jerry) Dipoto and (team president John) Carpino, let them know I’d love to talk to Arte (Moreno) and just sit down with him and let him know I wanted to be the player that he (was) paying for and putting the work and time in to be that guy.”

But, Hamilton reiterated, there was no reply.

“And whether it was relayed to ’em or not, once it gets out of my hands, it’s not my problem anymore,” Hamilton said. “But looking at it now, I hate the way things went down, I hate the way they happened. I owned my part, I don’t feel like I need to set an appointment up with Arte and go apologize to him for anything”

And what about his former Angels teammates?

“You know, the guys know where I’m at,” Hamilton said. “I’ve talked to many guys on that team and they tell me I don’t owe them anything. So leave the big guy out of it, you know, he can think what he wants to think. But as long as I’m OK with those guys, then I ain’t worried about anybody else.”

The Rangers took two out of three from the Angels over the weekend. Hamilton went 2-for-10 with a double and three runs scored in the series. He went 0-for-5 and was struck out three times in Sunday’s 13-7 Angels victory.

Hamilton, 34, is hitting .233 on the season with three home runs and eight RBIs in 86 at-bats.

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