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OC Register: What’s up with all the jugs of water Angels players have now?

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ANAHEIM — Athletic trainers and strength and conditioning coaches are always trying to impress upon their athletes the importance of hydration.

Around the Angels, they might have hit on something. They made it a competition.

“Anytime you’re doing something that’s tedious, if you can turn it into a game, then the sustainability is much better,” said Lee Fiocchi, the team’s strength and conditioning coach.

That is why most of the Angels players can now be seen, even in the dugout, with their own 64-ounce jug. The players each came up with their own nickname for the concoctions within, starting with “Luis Juice.”

Luis Valbuena started drinking water with branched chain amino acids last year. This year during spring training, his hydration tested for what is essentially a perfect score, Fiocchi said.

That achievement made an impression on the other players.

“They were pretty blown away,” Fiocchi said, “and that pretty much started the jugs and the Luis Juice. It’s been something that’s contagious.”

Mike Trout bought the jugs for everyone. Now most of the position players and a few pitchers carry around the jugs regularly. They contain mostly water, with some of the amino acid hydration supplement and various other flavorings and colors, to taste.

The players are regularly tested, and they are all shooting for the perfect score.

For an organization that in recent years has been beset by injuries – mostly arm injuries to pitchers – the hydration competition is a welcome sight for the training staff.

“There’s more of an emphasis here on hydration than any other team I’ve been on,” third baseman Zack Cozart said.

Added outfielder Chris Young: “I think a lot of teams talk about it, but actually implementing it into a daily routine is something they do a really good job of, for sure.”

The science behind hydration is relatively simple, Fiocchi said. Muscles that are better hydrated will be better able to react to the quick bursts of movement. It helps to avoid muscle strains and pulls. Players can also expect to have more energy.

Fiocchi is happy that he’s got a team full of players trying to out-hydrate each other. There is another side effect: “They’re going to the bathroom a lot more than they’re used to.”


Matt Shoemaker, who is out with a forearm strain, said Tuesday that he’s made significant progress recently.

“The first week and a half, the symptoms were pretty steady, but the last four or five days it’s noticeably gotten better,” he said. “It’s starting to feel really good.”

Shoemaker said he doesn’t know when he’ll be cleared to throw, but he’s been starting to push the training staff to give him a throwing schedule.

Last week Shoemaker underwent a battery of tests, and no new structural or nerve injuries were detected.


Right-hander Griffin Canning, one of the Angels’ top pitching prospects, was promoted from Class-A to Double-A after just two professional starts. Canning, a UCLA and Santa Margarita High product picked by the Angels in the second round of last year’s draft, did not allow a run in either of his two starts at Class-A.


Angels (Nick Tropeano, 1-0, 0.00) vs. Red Sox (Rick Porcello, 3-0, 1.83), Wednesday, 7 p.m., Fox Sports West, KLAA (830 AM)

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