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Thursday, July 7, 2022

Angels’ David Fletcher has no answer for uneven performance this season

ANAHEIM – The rollercoaster ride is almost over for David Fletcher.

The Angels second baseman has gone through a wild season in which he started off slowly, warmed up in the middle and is now ending with another long slump.

However, don’t ask him for an explanation.

“Every season is going to have its ups and downs,” Fletcher said on Wednesday. “Maybe more ups and downs for me this year, but I haven’t really changed much throughout the year.”

Fletcher hit .250 with .546 Ops during his first 37 games, then he missed three games with a minor hip problem. After returning, he hit .354 with .851 Ops in his next 59 games, including a 26-game hitting streak.

However, in his last 50 games, he hit .196 with .470 Ops.

Despite the numbers, Fletcher said that “I’ve been feeling great lately, just finishing the rest of the season.”

Fletcher, who is in his first year of five, signed a $26 million deal on Opening Day, still receiving support from manager Joe Maddon.

Madden, who gave Fletcher a day off on Wednesday, reported that Fletcher has hit a few balls hard recently without getting hit.

“Overall, he probably wasn’t as lucky as he was maybe a little earlier,” Maddon said. “They were pitching him a certain way and playing him a certain way, and it was working, but he would figure it out. I trust this guy a lot.”

Maddon has also said on every occasion that Fletcher’s defense of second place has been the best in baseball, and it makes up for what has happened at the plate.

“I just don’t look at the game as it comes down to just hitting, especially when you have a guy who can save you runs and play,” Maddon said. “And he’s still going to come up with huge hits for us. So I don’t see it that way. I know the numbers aren’t what they should be, but this guy’s the winner is a baseball player.”

NEXT FOR OHTANI

Shohei Ohtani is set to begin on Sunday, the Angels’ final home game of the season.

It would be just a week after his last outing, an eight-innings performance against the Oakland A. Ohtani (9-2) is looking to grab 10 wins and also try to finish the season in a healthy way.

Sunday will be his 23rd start, and he could potentially do another in Seattle on the final day of the season, October 3. Whether to start another one or two on Ohtani Mound, Maddon said he expects to hit every day.

“If he’s feeling it, he’ll hit,” Maddon said. “We’re not going to take him back because we’re worried about anything right now.”

notes

Left-handed Reed Detters threw 53 pitches in a three-innings mock game on Wednesday. If he does not face any problem in the coming days, then he can join the rotation again. Daters, who have missed the COVID list by more than a month, will likely be extended to pitch only a few innings. …

World Nation News Desk
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