Richards to return Sunday in series finale at Houston

Right-hander suffered ruptured patellar tendon in left knee eight months ago

Richards to return Sunday in series finale at Houston

HOUSTON -- Garrett Richards felt good coming out of his bullpen session on Friday afternoon and will make his long-awaited return from knee surgery on Sunday, starting the series finale against the Astros at Minute Maid Park.

"I think he came out of his start good," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He had a great bullpen. There are always going to be rough edges when you get back into the Major Leagues and start for the first time after what Garrett had been through, but you want to get that process started when he's ready. We want to get him on that path to doing what he was doing last year."

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Offseason work earning Cowgill more opportunities

Offseason work earning Cowgill more opportunities

HOUSTON -- Collin Cowgill's offseason home is a mile away from the college he attended, the University of Kentucky, so naturally, the Angels' outfielder spends every winter hitting at the facility with his old coaches. This winter, Cowgill had a new instructor by his side: Rick Eckstein, who left his post as the Angels' player-information coach to join the Kentucky Wildcats' coaching staff last August.

"It's real convenient to have a guy with his pedigree in my backyard," Cowgill said.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trout goes deep; youngest to 100 HRs, 100 SBs

Trout goes deep; youngest to 100 HRs, 100 SBs

HOUSTON -- Mike Trout continues to amaze. And it isn't even about what he did on Friday, a two-homer night that saw him carry the Angels to a 6-3 win and become the youngest player ever to record 100 home runs and 100 stolen bases.

It's that he keeps evolving.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trout's homers make history, top Astros

Trout's homers make history, top Astros

HOUSTON -- Mike Trout had his first multi-homer game of the season, became the youngest player with 100 home runs and 100 stolen bases and led the Angels to a 6-3 victory over the Astros at Minute Maid Park on Friday night.

The legend keeps growing.

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Richard Dean is a contributor to MLB.com. Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels players encouraged by meeting with Hamilton

Angels players encouraged by meeting with Hamilton

HOUSTON -- Josh Hamilton picked up David Freese, Collin Cowgill and Kole Calhoun from the team hotel on Thursday afternoon and took them to one of his favorite burger joints 10 miles away for what Freese simply described as "some lunch and some laughs between buddies."

It was just like old times, except not really.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels champing at bit for Richards' return

Trout, Pujols eager for righty to take hill, which could happen Sunday

Angels champing at bit for Richards' return

HOUSTON -- It was late on a Tuesday night, a day game loomed, the assembled media was out of questions and Mike Scioscia, two hours removed from watching his temporary fifth starter record only eight outs in Arlington, immediately shifted his attention to a rehabbing pitcher in Triple-A.

"We got a line on Garrett yet?" the Angels' manager asked, of nobody in particular.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

All the Trout stats that mere mortals cannot touch

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All the Trout stats that mere mortals cannot touch

It's time to admit the facts: There is intelligent life other than ours in the universe. I mean, how else can we explain what Mike Trout is doing other than that he is an alien lifeform? 

On Friday night, Trout hit two home runs to give him 101 for his career. It also made him the fastest batter to reach the 100 home run and 100 stolen base mark in Major League history. At 23 years and 251 days old (in Earth years, at least), Trout topped Alex Rodriguez, who previously held the record at 23 years and 309 days old. 

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Santiago inspired by No. 42, new 'do on Jackie Robinson Day

Lefty allows one run over seven innings in win

Santiago inspired by No. 42, new 'do on Jackie Robinson Day

ARLINGTON -- Hector Santiago was giddy about the fact that his second start of the season coincided with Jackie Robinson Day. He's an avid jersey collector and a great admirer of baseball's rich history, so the Angels starter was hoping that pitching on this special day would push him "a little further."

Then he took it a little further with his clippers.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels finally put it in high gear

Club hopes outburst lights offensive fuse

Angels finally put it in high gear

ARLINGTON -- The Angels' offense was finally starting to show signs of life over the last couple of days, putting together better at-bats and squaring a lot of balls up without much to show for it. Soon, they figured, those line drives would find holes and the lineup -- the same lineup that led the Majors in runs last season, with two notable exceptions -- would really get going.

They're hoping Wednesday's 10-run, 13-hit barrage at Globe Life Park was the start of something.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels cruise past Rangers after 6-run second

Angels cruise past Rangers after 6-run second

ARLINGTON -- The Angels scored six runs off of Rangers starter Anthony Ranaudo in the second inning and went on to a 10-2 victory on Wednesday afternoon. The Angels ended up taking two of three from the Rangers this week and have won 11 of their last 13 in Arlington.

Angels starter Hector Santiago earned his first win of the season by allowing just one run in seven innings. He gave up four hits and two walks while striking out five. Ranaudo was gone with two outs in the second after allowing eight of 13 batters to reach base. More >

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Scioscia hopes Hamilton has support group

Manager expects to communicate with rehabbing outfielder during Houston trip

Scioscia hopes Hamilton has support group

ARLINGTON -- Angels manager Mike Scioscia doesn't believe being with the team would've changed anything about Josh Hamilton's rehabilitation from shoulder surgery.

"He wouldn't be doing any more if he was with us," Scioscia said of Hamilton, who has been rehabbing his injury in Houston ever since undergoing surgery to his right AC joint on Feb. 4.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trout, Joyce learning each other's style in outfield

Trout, Joyce learning each other's style in outfield

ARLINGTON -- Angels left fielder Matt Joyce sprinted deep into the gap, chasing the Robinson Chirinos fly ball that would either plate two runs or become the final out of Tuesday's second inning.

"I thought I could get there," Joyce said. "I called it."

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rucinski, Angels have tough night in Texas

Rucinski, Angels have tough night in Texas

ARLINGTON -- Another new lineup for the Rangers, this one featuring Rougned Odor in the leadoff spot for the first time, made it tough on Angels rookie right-hander Drew Rucinski, and starter Nick Martinez did the rest in Texas' 8-2 win over the Angels on Tuesday night.

Martinez had a 13-inning scoreless streak to start the season until the Angels managed an unearned run off him in the seventh, his final inning of work.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hamilton has support of former teammates in Texas

Hamilton has support of former teammates in Texas

ARLINGTON -- You can still find Josh Hamilton's name, twice, as you make your way down the narrow hallway that spills into the home dugout of Globe Life Park. It's engraved on a couple of glass sheets, listed with the rest of the American League Most Valuable Player Award winners and batting champions in Rangers history. In the media dining room four floors up is a framed Fort Worth Star-Telegram, dated Oct. 30, 2010, with Hamilton on the cover.

The headline, in white capital letters, reads, "Leading Them Home." And right below that is the following subhead: "Josh Hamilton's personal success story is eclipsed, he believes, by being part of a tight, supportive championship team."

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB head of youth sports Reagins discusses game's future

MLB head of youth sports Reagins discusses game's future

LOS ANGELES -- Tony Reagins has spent decades in the game of baseball, and he's worked in everything from marketing to baseball operations. Reagins, formerly the general manager of the Angels, has taken on a new assignment with Major League Baseball as the senior vice president of youth programs, and he took some time Tuesday to discuss his plans for the future.

Reagins, under new Commissioner Rob Manfred, will be in charge of consolidating the league's relationships with youth, high school and college baseball organizations around the country. Reagins attended the Civil Rights Game instructional clinic Tuesday at Rancho Cienega Recreation Center, and he spoke a bit about Jackie Robinson, the Urban Youth Academies and the future of the game.

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Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cowgill, Freese go deep, Shoemaker gets the victory

Cowgill, Freese go deep, Shoemaker gets the victory

ARLINGTON -- Collin Cowgill and David Freese hit a pair of two-run home runs off Rangers starter Ross Detwiler in the fifth inning, lifting the Angels to a 6-3 victory on Monday night.

Angels starter Matt Shoemaker gave up three runs in the first inning, then retired 18 of the last 21 batters he faced before leaving with a two-run lead with one out in the seventh. He is unbeaten with nine victories in his last 10 starts going back to last season.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Shoemaker shows poise under pressure

Shoemaker shows poise under pressure

ARLINGTON -- It took Matt Shoemaker 22 pitches to record the first three outs on Monday night, and 55 pitches to record the 15 that followed. What looked like the start of a nightmare outing for the 28-year-old right-hander finished as a quality start and a 6-3 Angels victory, further proof that Shoemaker at the very least has the makeup to follow up his impressive rookie season.

"There's a presence to him," manager Mike Scioscia said. "He's not out there all hyper and getting distracted with the situation. He showed last year he can really pitch his way out of trouble. That's just a great game, from where it started to where it ended."

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trout reaches milestone with game No. 500

Trout reaches milestone with game No. 500

ARLINGTON -- Center fielder Mike Trout was told early Monday afternoon that later in the day he'd be playing his 500th career game in the Major Leagues, and for one of the few times in his young life, he was caught off guard.

"Is it really 500?" Trout said. "How 'bout that."

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Scioscia enjoying luxury of two lefty relievers

Scioscia enjoying luxury of two lefty relievers

ARLINGTON -- Lefty reliever Cesar Ramos has been shocked by the opposing lineup cards he's seen in his first year with the Angels.

"I felt like in the [American League] East there were a lot of big lefties," Ramos, formerly of the Rays, said, "but now I feel like they're all in the West."

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Halos hope to see Hamilton in Houston

Halos hope to see Hamilton in Houston

ARLINGTON -- The Angels will be in Houston this weekend, and they hope to see Josh Hamilton for the first time in 2015.

"Hopefully we'll connect with him face to face," manager Mike Scioscia said prior to Monday's game against Hamilton's former team, the Rangers. "Everybody's been in touch with him, but we want to connect with him and just see where everything is. Hopefully we'll get a chance to see him."

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Pujols' historic blast can't slow pesky Royals

Pujols' historic blast can't slow pesky Royals

ANAHEIM -- The Royals continued to pick up where they left off last season, sweeping the Angels on Sunday as they did in the American League Division Series in 2014.

On Sunday, the Royals whipped the Angels, 9-2, behind Alcides Escobar's three RBIs and the solid pitching of starter Yordano Ventura, who gave up just four hits and two runs through 5 2/3 innings while striking out seven.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FlannyMLB. Earl Bloom is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Pujols belts No. 522 for 18th place on homer list

Pujols belts No. 522 for 18th place on homer list

ANAHEIM -- Angels first baseman Albert Pujols assumed sole possession of 18th place on the all-time home run list -- belting No. 522 on Sunday against the Royals to move past Ted Williams, Willie McCovey and Frank Thomas.

Pujols belted a first-inning shot down the left-field line off hard-throwing Royals right-hander Yordano Ventura in a 9-2 loss in the series finale at Angel Stadium.

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Earl Bloom is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wilson thwarted by aggressive Royals hitters

Wilson thwarted by aggressive Royals hitters

ANAHEIM -- C.J. Wilson was close to being as sharp on Sunday afternoon as he was in his first start in Seattle.

The Angels left-hander, coming off eight shutout innings, ran into the buzz-saw known as the American League champion Royals, who completed a three-game sweep with a 9-2 victory at Angel Stadium.

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Earl Bloom is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Featherston gets feet wet in Major League debut

Featherston gets feet wet in Major League debut

ANAHEIM -- Taylor Featherston, who had never played above Double-A, made his Major League debut at second base for the Angels in a 9-2 loss to the Royals on Sunday.

Featherston went 0-for-3, handling four chances flawlessly, including turning his first double play. He played the first seven innings at second, and the last two at shortstop.

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Earl Bloom is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels, Royals benches empty in strange sixth

Ventura exits with leg cramp soon after confrontation with Trout

Angels, Royals benches empty in strange sixth

ANAHEIM -- What was heading toward a rather routine 9-2 Royals victory on Sunday suddenly got weird in the Angels' sixth inning.

Royals starter Yordano Ventura had given up just one hit and had struck out seven entering the inning with Kansas City holding a 7-1 lead.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FlannyMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Calhoun out of lineup due to tight calf muscle

Calhoun out of lineup due to tight calf muscle

ANAHEIM -- Angels leadoff hitter and outfielder Kole Calhoun did not start Sunday's game against the Royals due to a tight right calf muscle.

"He's taking a precautionary day," manager Mike Scioscia said. "I think he's been nursing it a couple of days. We just don't want it to go in the wrong direction right now."

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Earl Bloom is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.