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Angels Classic Rewind | Dateline: May 16th, 2002

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By Joe Haakenson, AngelsWin.com Contributor - 

MAY 16, 2002


DETROIT -- After a three-hour, 55-minute delay, the Angels game with the Detroit Tigers was rained out Thursday night at Comerica Park. No makeup date has been scheduled. The Angels are not scheduled to return to Detroit this season, but since the Tigers have one more trip to Anaheim, it's possible the makeup game will be played at Edison Field.

After the long delay, Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski thanked Angels manager Mike Scioscia for his patience, then added: ``Go beat up on everybody else now that you're done beating up on us.''

Scioscia said he had no problem with the long delay because the team was hoping to play and does not need rest at this stage of the season.

``Now's not the time you're looking for a rainout,'' he said. ``Early in the season you don't need them. As it builds up to the grind of the season (having to play a makeup game) can get a little tough. But there's no way around it.''

Scioscia added he wasn't worried that the rainout would slow his club's momentum. They've won 16 of 18, including seven in a row.

``I don't think the confidence level of the club will be broken by a day off,'' he said.

Players passed the time during the delay watching TV or playing cards. First baseman Scott Spiezio, who is the lead singer/songwriter in his band ``SandFrog,'' said: ``If I had brought my guitar I could have written a whole album.''

Scioscia said the rotation will simply be pushed back a day, meaning Thursday's scheduled starter Scott Schoeneweis will start tonight in Chicago against the White Sox.


Shawn Wooten and Benji Gil left the team Thursday for the club's minor league camp in Mesa, Ariz., where they will work out for the next week. Wooten (thumb surgery) and Gil (sprained ankle) are on the disabled list and recovering from their injuries, but left the team because rain is expected all weekend in Chicago, which would limit their ability to work out.

Gil will join Triple-A Salt Lake on Friday to begin a rehab assignment. Wooten hopes to go along with Gil, but there's a chance he'll need more time before going on a rehab assignment.

Wooten tore a ligament in his thumb on March 13 and hasn't played since. Gil sprained his ankle on April 5 in the team's fourth game of the season. Both are eager to get back.

``Obviously you want to be around when the team's playing well,'' Gil said. ``It's always fun, but when the team's winning, every day is like a party. It's pretty fun when you get to shake hands 10 times a day.''

Wooten said he was encouraged because he hit off a pitching machine in the batting cage for the first time Thursday.

``Being able to hit 80, 90-mph fastballs is big, that's what I was worried about,'' Wooten said. ``But it was good. I'm taking baby steps.''

Wooten and Gil are expected to need about one to two weeks of playing time on their respective rehab assignments. Besides showing that they are physically sound, both also need enough time to play multiple positions. Wooten will play first base, third and catcher; Gil will play first, second and shortstop.

Pitcher Donne Wall (tightness right arm) will join Salt Lake today in Memphis, Tenn. to begin his rehab assignment.


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