Anaheim – Angels catcher Logan Ohop didn’t come to Angel Stadium to play, but they still felt he could gain invaluable experience.
The Angels head coach Phil Nevin has added his best chances to the cab team in the last nine games of the season to be “eyes and ears open”, and gear up for competition next year.
“We thought it was a good idea to get him to drive around (Kurt Suzuki), drive him (Max Stasi), and have that veteran drive,” Nevin said. “So he’s comfortable going to spring training, knowing our staff and knowing these guys. He wasn’t around. He goes to spring training next year, and he’s going to really get used to those guys and start running when we get there.”
O’Hoppe, 22, was the key player the Angels acquired in Brandon Marsh’s deal with the Philadelphia Phillies last month. O’Hoppe immediately shot to the top of the Angels’ odds list, and boosted his condition by hitting 306 with 11 home points and 1.147 OPS in 29 games with the Angels’ Double-A.
The Rocket City Trash Pandas were eliminated from the playoffs last week, so the Angels brought O’Hoppe to Anaheim, gave him a uniform (#14) and instructed him to suck everything he could.
“I am really excited to be here and look forward to learning a lot,” O’Hoppe said.
Next year, O’Hoppe and Matt Thaiss’ number one on the deep play-time chart will be behind Stassi, who has two years left to extend the contract he signed in spring training. If Stassi is struggling next year as much as he is this year, it’s clear that O’Hoppe or Thaiss could work in a more prominent role.
Stassi said last month that he had already heard good things about O’Hoppe from a friend at the Phillies organization. They sat together near the bunker during Tuesday’s batting practice.
“I actually picked Max’s brain a little bit,” O’Hoppe said. “Hopefully it doesn’t bother me too much. I just try to wet my feet and try to just learn and learn as much as I can. This is the approach I have taken throughout my career. Your presence here will not change.”
O’Hoppe said he felt like he was better defensive than attacking, despite his impressive numbers on the board after the deal. He said spanking has become “contagious” around the other players at Rocket City.
“It was a dream come true,” Ohhope said. “I’ve been wanting to be part of a group like that for a while. I went down there and everyone made me feel so welcome right away. It was a group I’m going to miss. So many good guys and so many friendships I can make and keep up with now so it was a great experience. And a few months ago.” I will never forget. “
The Angels brought in league mini pitchers to throw to third baseman Anthony Rendon, who is rehabilitating from wrist surgery in June. They ramped up his training intensity as they tried to determine if he would be able to play before the end of the season.
After Rendon’s injury, Nevin said Rendon “swinged the bat really well, it felt good,” and that they “will see how he feels the next day.” Nevin said the Angels are ready to face the Archers again on Wednesday or Thursday.
But time is running out for the angels.
Rendon must serve a five-game suspension resulting from his role in the June fight against the Seattle Mariners. MLB isn’t likely to allow the Angels to simply activate Rendon for the suspension service, so he’ll need to be able to play after five games. The Angels have eight games left on Wednesday.
Both Rendon and Nevin said there’s value in getting Rendon back to 100%, even if it’s not activated, so it can be a worry-free winter.
Right hand Archie Bradley, who broke his elbow during the same fight, was activated on Tuesday.
Bradley scored 4.82 ERA in 21 games. He was on the list of people with a perverted problem before he broke his arm. Bradley, 30, said he’d like to re-sign with the Angels, so he hopes he can do something in the finals to prove he can do better next year.
“I still have thoughts about the season and the impact it could have had on me,” Bradley said. “I’m not saying things would have been different. But I feel I bring something more to the table than the average player. I would say it starts from there. Show Berry (Minassian), show the angels that I’m healthy. I’m still a good player in the Premier League.”
The Angels established places for Bradley on the 28th and 40th men’s rosters by assigning right-hand man Mike Myers to the assignment for the second time this season. Myers had a 5.68 ERA in 50-2/3 runs with the Angels.
David Fletcher has been training for hits against coaches, but hasn’t had a head-to-head throw yet. Fletcher said he still has some pain in his right hand from a ground blow earlier this month. …
Fox Sports has announced that it will be broadcasting a special show on Shohei Ohtani on FS1 on October 18. The show will start after the first game of the MLS Championship series.
Angels (RHP Michael Lorenzen, 7-6, 4.78) vs.A’s (RHP Adrian Martinez, 4-5, 6.10), Wednesday, 6:38 p.m., Bally Sports West, 830 a.m.