Angels offense struggles again in 3-0 loss to Indians in Little League Classic

Shohei Ohtani greets Little Leaguers in Williamsport, Pa., on Sunday.
(Gene J. Puskar / Associated Press)

The Indians complete a sweep of the Angels despite a hit and two walks from Shohei Ohtani.

Shohei Ohtani wows Little League crowds during Angels’ loss Tigers

The Angels' Shohei Ohtani autographs a baseball for Palm City, Fla.'s Brennan Jones
The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, left, autographs a baseball for Palm City, Fla.’s Brennan Jones, right, during a visit to the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pa., Sunday.
(Tom E. Puskar / Associated Press )

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — For Gibson Turner, Dodger fandom is a way of life.

The Torrance Little Leaguer was named after Kirk Gibson. He jokingly calls Justin Turner “Uncle Justin,” though they don’t have any real relation. His family’s house is lined with Dodger blue bobbleheads and memorabilia. His childhood has been filled with trips to Chavez Ravine.

As a shortstop and pitcher, Turner even used to try mimicking Clayton Kershaw’s motion — a big leg kick and over-the-head windup — on the mound.

But this year, as he helped lead his own team to the Little League Baseball World Series, Turner has found a big league role model from another team, too.

Even the biggest Dodger fan has found reason to admire Shohei Ohtani.

Like the rest of the baseball world, Turner has been struck by Ohtani’s all-around domination this campaign.

But to a 12-year-old Little Leaguer who plays both ways himself, the historic season has also meant something a little deeper, fueling aspirations for his own future in the sport.

“How he hits and pitches, it’s like he’s in Little League,” Turner said. “That’s definitely what I want to do. I want to make it to the big leagues and pitch and hit.”

And on Sunday, Turner and every other player in the Little League World Series got a front-row seat at Ohtani’s latest display, watching him and the Angels in a 3-0 defeat to the Cleveland Indians at the Little League Classic.

While the Angels lost the game, which is staged annually at historic Bowman Field in Williamsport, Pa., to coincide with the Little League World Series, Ohtani showcased his all-around skills again.

He didn’t pitch but did reach base in three of four plate appearances.

Angels star Shohei Ohtani warms up as Little Leaguers from Hamilton, Ohio, in red, watch
Angels star Shohei Ohtani warms up as Little Leaguers from Hamilton, Ohio, in red, watch before the Little League Classic baseball game against the Cleveland Indians at Bowman Stadium in Williamsport, Pa., Sunday.
(Tom E. Puskar / Associated Press)

The sharp crack of his bat on a hard single in the first inning was met by astonished gasps. Before drawing a walk to load the bases in the eighth, he was showered with high-pitched chants of “Sho-hei! Sho-hei!” by hundreds of young voices.

It wasn’t enough to help the Angels snap their offensive skid — they managed just two runs while getting swept in the weekend series and are fourth-worst in the majors in scoring since the All-Star break — but reinforced Ohtani’s importance to the next generation, providing another snapshot of his ever-growing influence on the sport.

“Seeing how well he does it,” Turner said, “it’s super inspiring.”

Sunday was full of other sentimental moments, for both the Little League and MLB players.

After landing in Williamsport in the afternoon, the Angels and Indians were swarmed upon arriving at the Little League complex, where they signed autographs, chatted with players from several teams and were offered a reflection of how they used to be.

For the Angels, the excursion came at a perfect time. In a season that is already prone to monotonous stretches, the Angels had been especially grinding of late. Not only are they in the midst of a five-city, 10-game trip, but they have been banged up and struggling at the plate.

“Walking into a place like this, this is home,” said manager Joe Maddon, who grew up about an hour away from Williamsport in western Pennsylvania. “This is what baseball’s all about.”

Echoed outfielder Jo Adell: “It’s kind of refreshing, in a way, to be in a game like this.”

Mike Trout was a main attraction, even as he continues to battle a calf injury. He was swarmed by the Hawaii squad after stepping into their dugout, and later signed a ball for every player on the team from his native New Jersey.

“To see the kids’ reactions,” Trout said, “that’s what it’s for.”

There were Angels players all over the rest of the complex too.

Some visited the World Series barracks to hang out with the Torrance team. Others took in game action from the stands before play was postponed by an afternoon rainstorm.

A few even slid down the famous grass hill behind center field at Lamade Stadium — including a tumbling attempt by Brandon Marsh that was caught on camera by ESPN.

But wherever they went, Little League players followed, soaking up the experience of being around a major leaguer.

“When you’re just walking in uniform with them,” Maddon said, “it’s got to be inspirational.”

And no one received a reception quite like Ohtani, who on Sunday added to his unprecedented two-way season and gave his youngest admirers another reason to dream.

Marte to IL

The Angels placed pitcher Jose Marte on the injured list without a designation Sunday, recalling reliever James Hoyt in his place. Postgame, Maddon didn’t offer any further information on Marte, who impressed in his MLB debut last week, and said a timetable for his return is unclear.


Little League Classic: Indians beat Angels 3-0

The Indians beat the Angels 3-0 in Sunday's Little League Classic. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — A recap of the Indians 3-0 win over the Angels in the Little League Classic.

End 1st, 2-0 Indians — Amed Rosario homers: Shohei Ohtani singled and stole second to lead off the game, his 19th steal of the season, but was left stranded in the top of the first.

In the bottom half of the inning, Amed Rosario opened the scoring, hitting a high two-run homer off José Suarez over the short 320-foot wall in left field.

End 4th, 3-0 Indians — José Suarez exits after giving up another run: José Suarez’s start in the Little League Classic lasted just four innings, after the left-hander gave up another run in the fourth.

Austin Warren took over to begin the fifth for the Angels, who have just two hits and are 0-for-3 with runners in scoring position so far.

End 8th, 3-0 Indians — Angels squander bases loaded opportunity: After managing only two hits against Cleveland starter Cal Quantrill in the first seven innings, the Angels created a threat against the Indians bullpen in the eighth.

Brandon Marsh drew a leadoff walk. Jo Adell rolled a single through the infield. And with one out, Shohei Ohtani picked up his second free pass of the game to load the bases.

But in the next at-bat, David Fletcher grounded the first pitch he saw to third base for an inning-ending double-play — a huge missed opportunity especially after Warren and Cishek each threw a pair of scoreless innings out of the bullpen.

Final, Indians win 3-0: It was a very different venue, but a very familiar result for the Angels offense of late, suffering a sweep to the Indians in a 3-0 loss.

The Angels, who have scored the fourth-fewest runs in the majors since the All-Star break and plated just two runs in this weekend’s series, are now 62-64 and play next on Tuesday against the Baltimore Orioles.


‘This is what baseball’s all about:’ Angels and Indians excited for Little League Classic

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — From the moment they landed in Williamsport on Sunday morning, the Angels have been on the move.

First, they bussed to the Little League World Series complex, where they signed autographs, slid down the famous hill beyond center field of Lamade Stadium and hung out with players from the Little League World Series.

Then, they drove across town through heavy rain to Bowman Field, a 2,400-seat summer league park, to face the Cleveland Indians in the Little League Classic.

In a season that can sometimes feel monotonous — and lately had been a grind for the Angels, who have continued to flounder in the standings during a five-city, 10-game road trip — Sunday was a welcome reprieve, a return to their roots.

“Walking into a place like this, this is home,” manager Joe Maddon said. “This is what baseballs all about.”

Added outfielder Jo Adell: “It’s kind of refreshing, in a way, to be in a game like this.”

The Angels made two pregame roster moves Sunday: Kean Wong was added as the 27th player to the active roster for the game. Pitcher James Hoyt was recalled while Jose Marte was placed on the injured list without designation.

Below is the lineup the Angels will field Sunday night:


Reid Detmers comes up short in battle of young pitchers, as Angels fall to Tigers 5-1

The Angels went into Saturday’s game against the Cleveland Indians hoping a young pitcher, fresh off a dominant start, would continue his momentum and carry his team to a win.

That happened. It just wasn’t the Angels’ pitcher who did it.

In a matchup between promising young pitchers in Reid Detmers and Cleveland’s Triston McKenzie, the Indians’ rookie right-hander came out on top, authoring seven shutout innings to lead them to a 5-1 win at Progressive Field as Detmers struggled.

McKenzie’s looping curveball made the mighty Shohei Ohtani, who struck out swinging three times on that pitch, look mortal. His sweeping slider made Jo Adell whiff so hard that the slugger’s helmet came off. His lively fastball made hitter after hitter pop out harmlessly. When the dust settled, McKenzie had struck out eight against just two hits and a walk.

“There’s a real tension-free method — he’s just nice and loose, and the ball comes out hot,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “He’s something to be reckoned with in the future.”

Detmers, meanwhile, had a roller coaster of a fourth career outing that looked disastrous in some aspects and decent in others. The left-hander, the 10th pick in last year’s draft, was coming off a six-inning, one-run performance but lasted just 32/3 innings, surrendering seven hits, three walks and three runs.

“Just gotta bounce back next week and keep going out there and giving it your all,” Detmers said.

Trouble began in the first inning, when Cleveland’s Amed Rosario poked a one-out single into right field and Jose Ramirez banged a double off the left-center-field wall. The speedy Rosario flew around the bases, looking primed to bring the Indians their first run of the game, but a terrific relay throw from Angels second baseman David Fletcher nabbed him at home plate to keep them off the board.

Fletcher made another run-saving play in the third inning, laying out to stop a grounder up the middle from Cleveland’s Owen Miller that could’ve brought a runner home from third.

Maddon called Fletcher the best defensive second baseman in the American League earlier this season. He took that one step further after the game.

“He’s the best defender in the league. I don’t care, you can talk every position you want,” Maddon said. “If I’m going to stump on anybody, that boy needs to win a Gold Glove.”

After two walks to load the bases, Detmers escaped the first unscathed by inducing a groundout, then got a 1-2-3 second inning.

But in the third, Detmers’ luck ran out, as an inability to convert on two-strike counts cost him. With an 0-and-2 advantage against Cleveland’s Myles Struck, he surrendered a single.

With an 0-and-2 advantage against Rosario — who had three hits and nearly four if not for Jack Mayfield’s leaping grab in the eighth inning — Detmers surrendered another single. Ramirez then launched a curveball over the left-field fence, and the damage was done.

“That’s really what it came down to, hitting my spots,” Detmers said. “That’s what happened today — didn’t hit my spots, and they took advantage of it.”

After a two-out walk to Rosario in the fourth, Detmers got the early hook from Maddon. As the inning ended, the broadcast showed Detmers, seemingly lost in thought, staring at the floor of the dugout.

“I just got pulled after 32/3, so I wasn’t happy,” Detmers said of the moment. “As soon as you see Joe walking out of the dugout before you even get through the fourth, it’s hard.”

A three-run advantage would’ve been a small hill to climb in most cases — heck, the Angels strung together a six-run inning days earlier in an inspired comeback against Detroit — but against McKenzie, it seemed more like a mountain.

Down 5-0 in the top of the eighth inning after a Rosario homer and Bradley Zimmer’s sacrifice fly in the seventh, the Angels finally knocked McKenzie out of the game following a walk by Jose Iglesias. Brandon Marsh then looped a double down the left-field line, giving the Angels momentum against the Indians’ bullpen. But they mustered just a run-scoring groundout from Adell the rest of the way.

Detmers was upset with himself for the performance. But a silver lining was the fight he showed to get into the fourth, and the 22-year-old recognized there will be plenty of opportunities to redeem the results.

“There’s a lot of learning to do,” he said.

“I’ve made four starts. There’s still a lot of room left.”


Exclusive: Filing in Tyler Skaggs case based on testimony of multiple MLB players

Tyler Skaggs #45 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitches
Tyler Skaggs, here in 2018.
(Jayne Kamin-Oncea / Getty Images)

Federal prosecutors plan to present testimony from “approximately” five Major League Baseball players who allege they received oxycodone from a former Angels employee who faces trial in the fatal overdose of pitcher Tyler Skaggs, according to a court filing late Friday.

The filing, which outlines some of the evidence prosecutors will introduce at the trial, accuses former Angels communications director Eric Kay of being the “singular source” who supplied oxycodone to the players in amounts of “two to three pills while others would ask for up to 20 pills.”

“The evidence will also demonstrate that Kay often coordinated the distribution through text messages or through conversations involving the victim [Skaggs],” the filing said. “This witness testimony will in many instances be corroborated by text message communications…. Evidence will also demonstrate that Kay was motivated to obtain these pills because Kay could himself use some of the pills that he obtained for the players. It therefore provides context and background to the distribution at issue in the indictment.”

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Live updates: Cleveland defeats Angels 5-1

Bottom 3rd: Reid Detmers’ inability to capitalize after getting ahead in counts hurt him in the third inning. After two-strike singles by Cleveland’s Myles Straw and Amed Rosario, Jose Ramirez took a first-pitch curveball deep to leftfield for a three-run homer to give the Indians a 3-0 lead, which remains the score into the bottom of the sixth.

Bottom 7th: Cleveland tacks on two runs as the Angels cycle through their bullpen. Shortstop Amed Rosario led off the inning with a solo homer off Mike Mayers, and replacement Steve Cishek surrendered a walk and two bloop infield singles to load the bases. Sam Selman then inherited the no-out mess and managed to escape with just a sacrifice fly given up. 5-0 Indians.

Top 9th: Cleveland closes out a 5-1 win with a 1-2-3 ninth. The Angels had an opportunity to cut into the lead in the top of the eighth after a Jose Iglesias walk and Brandon Marsh double to lead off the inning, but mustered just an RBI groundout from Jo Adell as their only run of the day. Indians starting pitcher Tristan McKenzie finished with seven shutout innings and eight strikeouts in a dominating performance.


Mike Trout speaks before game, and the time off is driving him crazy

Mike Trout, here before a game against the Oakland Athletics on July 19, has entered his fourth month on the IL.
(AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

As soon as he gets on the team bus, Mike Trout just wants to play baseball. As soon as his shoes touch the grass of Angel Stadium, he just wants to play baseball. It was the joy the Angels’ star centerfielder brings to each game, the exuberance after big hits or robbing opponents of home runs, that so endears him to fans.

Since May 17, when he felt a pop in his calf during a game against the Cleveland Indians, that joy has largely disappeared. Amid the longest recovery from injury of his career, Trout has been “going crazy.”

“It’s a grind,” Trout said before Saturday’s game against the Indians. “I come in every day, work hard, and it seems like it’s just dragging. It’s definitely wearing on me a little bit. But I’m staying positive.”

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Jose Marte stellar in debut, but Jaime Barria struggles again in Angels 9-1 loss to Indians

Jaime Barria gave up five runs in two innings in the Angels' loss on Friday.
(Tony Dejak / Associated Press)

This time, there was no comeback for the Angels.

Whatever momentum they had built this week seemed to disappear.

Instead, a day after magically rallying from an eight-run deficit to complete a sweep in Detroit, the Angels suffered an eight-run defeat in a listless 9-1 loss to the Cleveland Indians on Friday.

After getting little from starter Jaime Barria, who gave up five runs in two innings, or the lineup, which managed just four hits on a day the Indians pitched a de facto bullpen game, the Angels (62-62) dropped back to .500 for the 25th time this season — one short of a club record.

“We just came off a big comeback yesterday,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “It’s hard to replicate that on a consistent basis.”

Here are three observations from Friday.

Barria struggles again

Barria’s return to the Angels rotation last month began with promise, when he gave up only five runs in 19 2/3 innings in his first three starts this year.

In his last two outings, however, the 25-year-old right-hander has been roughed up both times.

After giving up three runs in three innings against the Houston Astros last week, Barria lasted just two frames on Friday.

“He just didn’t have his normal stuff,” Maddon said. “Nothing was really crisp, nothing was finishing ... It just wasn’t going to work out after two innings.”

In the first, Barria gave up a three-run homer to Franmil Reyes on a hanging slider.

In the second, Myles Straw and Amed Rosario both hit RBI doubles to make it 5-0 — the first time Barria had surrendered more than three runs in a start since 2019.

“Tomorrow, I want to sit down and watch some video,” Barria said through an interpreter. “I want to figure out the problem as fast as I can.”

Even though Barria had only thrown 45 pitches, Maddon decided to replace him to begin the third.

Afterward, the manager noted that decreased fastball velocity (which on Friday averaged just 93.2 mph, almost a full tick slower than his season average) and inconsistency with breaking pitches have been issues in both of his past two outings.

Barria offered a similar assessment.

“I feel like this start and my previous start was more about location,” Barria said. “I’ve been off on my location. The catcher sets up and I keep missing my spots. That’s what I should be focusing on.”

Marte’s strong debut

The biggest positive on Friday: Jose Marte, who struck out four batters over two scoreless innings in his major-league debut.

“My first batter, first pitch, I was a little nervous,” Marte said. “But after that, I was able to calm myself down.”

A 25-year-old reliever, Marte was acquired by the Angels when they traded Tony Watson to the San Francisco Giants last month -- one of the many new arms they added through the trade deadline and MLB draft.

Before the game, Maddon said the club had been impressed by Marte’s hard fastball and ability to throw strikes. Both things showed up once he took the mound Friday, as he averaged 97.3 mph with the heater and hit the zone on 22 of 33 pitches.

After stranding a two-out single in the fourth inning, he returned for the fifth and struck out the side.

“He was ready for that moment,” Maddon said. “It was good to get it out of the way, get his feet on the ground. I thought he handled it beautifully. And his stuff was really good.”

Like fellow rookie reliever Austin Warren, Maddon said Marte will have the opportunity to quickly ascend into a leverage spot if he continues to pitch well.

“You’re still looking to get on a nice run and become very pertinent, but at the same time you’re always looking to the future,” Maddon said when asked if Marte’s debut helped cushion the blow of an otherwise underwhelming night. “It’s fun to watch him.”

Not another comeback

While Marte was good, other Angels relievers weren’t as sharp.

While Sam Selman -- another pitcher acquired in the Watson trade -- pitched a scoreless third, Junior Guerra and José Quijada struggled later in the game. Guerra gave up three runs in the sixth. Quijada gave up another in the ninth.

Meanwhile, the offense did little to chip away at the Indians’ lead. After a third-inning RBI single by David Fletcher, the Angels produced only two more baserunners the rest of the night.

“There’s a lot to like about this group and I think [the comeback] yesterday personified that,” Maddon said. “Today was just a tougher day.”


As Mike Trout continues rehab, could a corner outfield spot be in his future?

Mike Trout did some early work prior to Friday’s game, Angels manager Joe Maddon said, the latest step in Trout’s hopeful return to action this year.

Maddon said Trout — who has been out since mid-May with a right calf strain — was a little sore earlier this week after resuming on-field activities. But Trout told Maddon on Friday he was feeling good again.

“It’s always about, after he has done it, how does he feel [afterward]?” Maddon said. “That’s what we have to be patient with.”

If Trout is indeed able to come back this season, Maddon left open the possibility that he might not return to his customary center field position.

When asked if the three-time MVP could potentially play a corner outfield spot instead, Maddon said the team hadn’t made a decision yet.

“The first thing is to get him back,” Maddon said. “As we’re on the comeback trail, we’ll discuss the different options and get his feelings and his opinion on how he believes he’d be able to handle that moment.”

In Trout’s absence, rookie Brandon Marsh has performed capably as the Angels’ everyday center fielder since making his debut in July.

Trout, whose advanced defensive metrics in center have been inconsistent in recent seasons, hasn’t played a corner outfield spot in a game since 2013.

“Once we arrive at that point where he gets some rehab games in,” Maddon said, “we’ll address it.”

Maddon added the team still doesn’t have a set timeframe for when Trout might be able to go out on a minor-league rehab assignment.

“I think it’s more based on how Mike is feeling, as opposed to, ‘We need seven more days’ or whatever,’ Maddon said.


Angels call up hard-throwing reliever Jose Marte

Through the draft, the signing of undrafted free agents and the trade deadline, the Angels had a clear objective in mind this summer: Remake their organizational pitching depth.

On Friday, the club’s MLB roster will impacted by one of those new arms for the first time, after hard-throwing right-hander Jose Marte had his contract selected prior to the team’s series-opener against the Cleveland Indians.

In a corresponding move, right-hander Aaron Slegers was optioned.

A 25-year-old reliever, Marte was acquired by the Angels when they traded Tony Watson to the San Francisco Giants last month.

After spending the beginning of the season in Class High-A and Class AA, Marte was promoted to triple A by the Angels earlier this month, where he gave up six earned runs in five innings but also struck out six batters while issuing just one walk.

“A big arm and a strike-thrower,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said of the scouting reports he’d received on Marte, a Dominican Republic native originally signed by the Giants in 2015.

“He wouldn’t be here if he didn’t throw strikes,” Maddon added. “That’s one of the mandates Perry [Minasian, the Angels general manager] put out there ... We need strike-throwers. We need aggressive relief pitchers that have great durability and when they come into the game, we need more strikes.”

Marte impressed in the minor leagues with a hard fastball that Maddon said can reach 99 mph or higher. He also throws a slider and changeup.

After originally being developed as a starter, he switched to the bullpen this year and has a 3.65 ERA across 37 innings at all levels.

According to Baseball America, he was the No. 30 prospect in the Giants organization this year before being shipped to the Angels.

Maddon said that, in addition to Marte’s velocity and ability to fill up the zone, club brass had been struck by his mental makeup since he arrived.

“The strike-throwing and the makeup has really propelled him right now,” Maddon said, adding: “We’ll get him out there ASAP and take a look at him for ourselves.”


Stunning rally by Angels finishes sweep of Tigers

Angels catcher Max Stassi, Brandon Marsh and Shohei Ohtani celebrate after beating the Detroit Tigers.
Angels catcher Max Stassi, from left, Brandon Marsh and Shohei Ohtani (17) celebrate after beating the Detroit Tigers 13-10 in Detroit on Thursday.
(Paul Sancya / Associated Press)

It didn’t take long for Angels outfielder Brandon Marsh to experience something extraordinary in his brief time in the major leagues.

“I don’t think I’ve ever, in any game of baseball, came back from, was it eight?” said Marsh, who played in his 32nd career game Thursday. “A moment to remember, forever.”

With the help of Marsh’s three-for-five day, which included two triples, the Angels were able to overcome an eight-run deficit after five innings and beat the Detroit Tigers 13-10 at Comerica Park in Detroit. The Angels (62-61) scored the final 11 runs of the game to sweep the three-game series.

Through the first few innings, the Angels looked to be asleep in a 10:10 a.m. PDT start.

After Patrick Sandoval was scratched and placed on the 10-day disabled list, left-hander Jose Quintana was tabbed to open the game and struggled. He completed just 1 1/3 innings, giving up seven hits and five earned runs to push his ERA to 6.84 for the season. His successor, Aaron Slegers, didn’t fare much better, surrendering seven hits and four runs across 3 1/3 innings.

After an RBI double by Tigers first baseman Jonathan Schoop in the fifth inning off Slegers, the Angels found themselves down 10-2 in the top of the sixth.

The stadium was abuzz, as Tigers fans looked forward to a leisurely afternoon ending in victory and a chance to see Miguel Cabrera’s 500th homer.

But the Angels’ dugout didn’t blink, according to manager Joe Maddon.

“You’re never out of it in this game,” Marsh said.

The comeback started in that sixth innocuously enough. Catcher Max Stassi knocked a single, and with one out, Shohei Ohtani followed with an infield hit. Second baseman David Fletcher singled to load the bases, and third baseman Phil Gosselin followed by knocking a ground ball off Detroit pitcher Joe Jimenez’s glove to drive in Stassi.

With the bases still loaded, Jared Walsh and Justin Upton stayed still as statues as Jimenez suddenly forgot how to locate his fastball. Successive bases-loaded walks cut the lead to 10-5.

Detroit had a chance to get out of the inning when right fielder Jo Adell grounded a ball to shortstop that had “double play” practically etched across its seams, but Adell narrowly beat the throw to first after the force at second, a play Maddon praised after the game. Marsh followed with a drive over Tigers center fielder Daz Cameron’s head for a two-run triple.

Marsh had scuffled for weeks in his rookie season, hitting just .155 through Aug. 11. But Maddon has repeatedly praised his demeanor in not getting down on himself — and now, the center fielder is starting to produce. Marsh has hit well over .400 across his last eight games.

“He could go 0-for-3 and punch out three times, and then you watch him run,” Maddon said. “You watch how his body moves, how fluid it is, and it’s easy to overcome three strikeouts mentally.”

He was certainly moving in this game. The first, which hit the top of the right-field wall and came perhaps two inches away from his first big-league homer, opened the scoring for the Angels in the second.

After the game, Maddon said of the long-haired outfielder that watching him sprint around the bases was like watching Fabio — a fashion model with famously flowing hair — “hit a triple.”

Marsh didn’t know who Fabio was. An Angels public relations representative handed him a phone with a picture of the celebrity after the game.

“Oh, OK,” Marsh said, smiling and gazing at the phone. “The hair — the muscle’s not quite there. He’s got a little bit of swag to him.”

The outfielder carried that swag into the eighth inning, after a seventh-inning RBI double by Walsh brought the Angels one step closer, 10-9.

As Detroit pitcher Michael Fulmer pounded the zone with sinkers, Marsh calmly fouled off ball after ball until an eventual 10-pitch walk. Maddon said he felt the plate appearance was a turning point.

“What an at-bat by Marsh, jeez,” Stassi said. “That was really, really cool to see.”

Five pitches later, Stassi deposited a 95-mph sinker into the left-field stands for a two-run homer, giving the Angels an improbable 11-10 lead.

Relievers Andrew Wantz and Mike Mayers helped steady the ship, each tossing shutout innings. Buoyed by a three-run lead after an Ohtani sacrifice fly in the eighth and Phil Gosselin solo homer in the ninth, Austin Warren pitched two innings of shutout ball to end the day and seal the comeback — tied for the greatest in Angels franchise history.

“What stands out to you about Warren?” Maddon asked rhetorically. “Strike. Strike. Strike.”


Patrick Sandoval is out indefinitely due to a back injury

Patrick Sandoval was scheduled to make his 15th start of the year for the Angels Thursday.

Instead, the morning saw manager Joe Maddon tell media that Sandoval is “not going to be pitching for a while” after being placed on the 10-day disabled list Wednesday.

Sandoval, who has a left lumbar spine stress reaction, is not with the team while he undergoes testing on the back injury, Maddon said. It remains to be seen if he’ll return this season. The 24-year-old has been one of the Angels’ most consistent arms all season, posting a 3.62 ERA and 94 strikeouts across 87 innings.

Good news did come, however, in the form of an update on starter Alex Cobb, who’s been out since late July with a wrist injury. Maddon said Cobb threw yesterday, and was feeling better.

“He didn’t feel anything, so it was a good day,” Maddon said.

Jose Quintana will take the mound for the Angels today in place of Sandoval, the lefty’s first start since May 30. Quintana, once a trusty starter with the White Sox and Cubs, fell out of the rotation after a rocky beginning to the year, but hasn’t allowed a run out of the bullpen in August.

“He’s been throwing strikes, and that’s the big thing with Q,” Maddon said.

The manager said Quintana was “excited” to return to a starting role.