ANAHEIM — Nearly three weeks after Logan O’Hoppe returned to the Angels’ lineup, having missed the minimum amount of time with shoulder surgery, he said he feels great.
“Physically, I feel pretty good,” the Angels rookie catcher said. “Pretty disgusted with how it’s been results-wise.”
O’Hoppe has hit .146 with a .508 OPS in 60 plate appearances since returning from the injured list. He was hitting .259 with an .813 OPS before the injury.
“I’m trying to just feel back what I felt before,” O’Hoppe said. “The first rehab start I had I really felt out of water. I felt like I hadn’t played baseball before, ever. So working back through it has taken longer than I anticipated. Working with (hitting coach Marcus Thames) a lot. It’s been getting better every day, so hopefully we’ll start piecing something together at the end.”
Manager Phil Nevin said the Angels expected that O’Hoppe might have some issues offensively when he returned after getting just 28 plate appearances over eight games in his rehab assignment. He hit .375 with a .964 OPS in the minors.
“We really wanted to get his legs underneath him catching-wise, but he was swinging the bat so well down there and moving around so good that we just felt it was the right time,” Nevin said. “The offense was gonna come second. We knew that, but I think the at-bats are good. He’s swinging at a lot of the right pitches. He’s gonna chase some. That’s what big guys do and guys who hit the ball out of the park. I think he’s moved it around the field. I really liked his approach.”
The good news is that O’Hoppe said his left shoulder has not given him any issues since surgery to repair a torn labrum.
“My shoulder feels brand new,” O’Hoppe said. “No pain or discomfort or any tweaks or anything like that at all. Even that tag (on the triple play) that first night felt totally fine. Yeah, there’s no barrier (on) anything I’m trying to go with. I’m just going to start playing better.”
Shohei Ohtani took some swings in the cage and did some agility drills and running on the field, but he still wasn’t ready to return to the lineup. He missed his fourth straight game because of oblique tightness.
Ohtani first felt a twinge during batting practice on Monday, and he didn’t take any swings on Tuesday or Wednesday.
“He’s really close today,” Nevin said. “He did take some swings today. He feels better. I just don’t feel comfortable with him going all out and taking a full swing like he does. I think we’re within a day or two. It’s just not today.”
Ohtani is also facing some type of procedure to repair his torn ulnar collateral ligament before heading into free agency this winter.
Third baseman Anthony Rendon began hitting off a tee this week, the first baseball activity he’s done in the two months that he’s been out with a bone bruise in his shin.
Rendon’s activity is limited only by his pain tolerance, and until this week he had only done work in the gym or the trainer’s room.
Rendon has not spoken to the media since the injury occurred on July 4.
Right-hander Jaime Barría was placed on the injured list with a hamstring injury. Nevin said Barria felt the tweak in his hamstring when he was backing up a base on Wednesday night, but he continued pitching and didn’t say anything until after the game. “We decided to err on the side of caution,” Nevin said. “Hopefully he has a good last week or two of the season if this is only the 15 (days on the injured list).” …
The Angels recalled left-hander Jhonathan Diaz and right-hander Davis Daniel. One took Barria’s spot, and the other took the place of right-hander Gerardo Reyes, who was optioned. Diaz was set to start in a bullpen game on Thursday night. …
Daniel was in the majors briefly last year, but he never appeared in a game. He spent almost all of this season rehabbing a right shoulder strain. “It’s been a long season,” Daniel said. “A lot of hard work and a lot of a lot of long days in the heat in Arizona, but feeling really good now and glad to be back on the mound and ready to roll.”
Guardians (LHP Logan Allen, 6-7, 3.77 ERA) at Angels (RHP Griffin Canning, 7-5, 4.30 ERA), Friday, 6:38 p.m., Bally Sports West, 830 AM
Hoornstra: ‘Why We Love Baseball’? Let us count the ways
Another rough outing for Patrick Sandoval sends Angels to 6th straight loss
Shohei Ohtani remains out of Angels’ lineup, might play Thursday
Angels drop rollercoaster 10-inning game to Orioles, their 5th straight loss
Shohei Ohtani out of Angels’ lineup for 2nd straight day with oblique tightness