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OC Register: Kole Calhoun shows value as a presence in Angels clubhouse

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LOS ANGELES — When Andrelton Simmons looks at Kole Calhoun, he sees more than a Gold Glove right fielder who has had a resurgent season at the plate.

“He’s like coffee,” Simmons said. “Having him in the clubhouse wakes people up and pumps everybody up. … He sets the tone. I can’t explain why, but he has that character. He doesn’t try to lead, but he’s a guy you follow. I can’t explain why.”

In his sixth season as an everyday player with the Angels, Calhoun has continued to emerge as a valuable clubhouse presence. Manager Brad Ausmus has said several times this year, as far back as spring training, that before he was around the team regularly last year, he didn’t realize how much Calhoun was a key piece of the clubhouse.

“He makes the clubhouse fun,” Ausmus said on Wednesday. “It makes it easier on the manager. It keeps the clubhouse pointed in the right direction and happy. The clubhouse is for the players. It helps to have some players at the top who keep the atmosphere where it should be.”

Told of Ausmus’ words about his value to the clubhouse, Calhoun said it’s no coincidence.

“It’s definitely something I aspire to,” Calhoun said. “I definitely want to be a guy who can get the guys fired up. I have a relationship with everyone in here. I want to go out and win and try to keep everybody together, keep everybody happy and having some fun.”

That has been especially important over the past month, as the Angels have dealt with the tragic loss of teammate Tyler Skaggs.

“It’s definitely brought us closer just as a whole having gone through these experiences together,” Calhoun said. “Getting back on the field and doing some special things together, it keeps reiterating the fact that we’re a unit, which is really cool.”

Calhoun, 31, has a $14 million option for next year, with a $1 million buyout. The Angels also have top prospect Jo Adell, who also plays right field, and they will need to make a decision on the option shortly after the end of the World Series.


José Suarez will be recalled to start on Thursday, the opener of a four-game series against the Baltimore Orioles. Griffin Canning will start on Friday, and Félix Peña will pitch on Sunday, following an opener.

On Saturday, the Angels are still undecided about their pitching plans. Ausmus said one of the scenarios would be a bullpen game.

Ausmus said it’s unlikely that JC Ramírez would be ready to be a part of Saturday’s pitching plan. Ramírez, who is rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, was scheduled for two more outings with Class-A Inland Empire, Ausmus said.


Andrew Heaney will be hosting the second annual Pup Cup Orange County on Saturday. Fans are encouraged to bring their dogs along for a 5K run at Lakeview Park in Silverado, with proceeds benefitting the therapy dog program at Children’s Hospital of Orange County.

For more information or to register, visit pupcup5k-9.com.


Angels (LHP José Suarez, 2-1, 5.51) vs. Orioles (RHP Tom Eshelman, 0-2, 6.91), Thursday, 7:07 p.m., Fox Sports West, 830 AM

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