CLEVELAND -- When he was demoted to Triple-A Salt Lake, after the Angels elected to go with two catchers, Hank Conger handled it as well as a young player can -- calmly, professionally, vowing to work on parts of his game that had slipped as the season wore on.
Conger was intent on using the opportunity to play regularly to recapture his hitting stroke, and the early evidence shows he is making good on his pledge. Through six Pacific Coast League games, Conger is hitting .360 with two homers and 10 runs batted in, putting together a 1.065 OPS. He also has two doubles and is slugging .680.
Batting third in the Bees' lineup on Monday, Conger homered and singled, driving in a pair of runs, in a 9-2 rout of Tacoma. He caught Matt Palmer, and the big right-hander who had such an impact on the 2009 Angels had his second excellent start in a row, yielding one run on four hits in six innings with seven strikeouts.
Reliever Michael Kohn, recently demoted to Salt Lake after a recurrence of control issues, worked a perfect inning of relief with a strikeout.