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Yunel Escobar’s throwing woes not a concern for Angels manager

Yunel Escobar’s throwing woes not a concern for Angels manager

Angels infielder Yunel Escobar warms up before the first game of the Freeway Series against the Dodgers on March 31.

(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

Angels Manager Mike Scioscia acknowledged in late February that new third baseman Yunel Escobar, a converted shortstop who was acquired from the Washington Nationals in December, has a tendency to lower his arm slot at times, causing his throws to first base to tail and dip.

“He’s got a very strong arm,” Scioscia said at the time. “When his footwork is right, his arm angle is fine.”

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Escobar did not look fine Thursday night in the first game of the preseason Freeway Series against the Dodgers. He threw wild to second base on a first-inning force play, but second baseman Johnny Giavotella prevented an error by making a sprawling catch while keeping his foot on the bag.

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Escobar one-hopped a throw to first on Yasiel Puig’s third-inning grounder, which first baseman C.J. Cron scooped for the out, but he bounced another side-arm throw past first base for an error on A.J. Ellis’ sixth-inning grounder.

“I think his footwork was fine. It looked like a release-point issue,” Scioscia said before Friday night’s game. “One throw that sunk a little bit, he got underneath it. He made a nice play when he was playing deep [in a shift]. He’s fine. He’s going to be fine at third base.”

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Follow Mike DiGiovanna on Twitter @MikeDiGiovanna

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