The real Angels showed up today

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This is what I’ve been preaching to everybody, what you saw today at Angel Stadium. What happened in the regular season doesn’t matter now. It’s guys people don’t focus on who come through and decide playoff games.

That’s what we saw today with Jeff Mathis banging those two doubles, driving in the winning run, and throwing out Brett Gardner stealing second before Jorge Posada’s home run in the eighth inning. That was a huge play that shouldn’t be overlooked — the pitchout and throw to get Gardner.

And what a day it was for my locker mate, Howard Kendrick. He came through like a champion. He had a rough postseason last year, but this year, it’s different. He’s playing with fire, like he’s mad. And I like that.

This was more like it, more like us. We played the game hard, and we played it right. What happened in New York, that’s not our baseball. Today, we still made some mistakes, but it was more like us.

We kept battling and battling, and we came back and won a huge ballgame. Now we’ve got to carry that momentum into Game 4 and try to get CC Sabathia, one of the best.

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This game today had to be a huge lift for a lot of guys. I was so happy for Vlad Guerrero. He said he was going to do something special, and he did it with that two-run homer in the sixth inning. That was Vladdy being Vladdy, crushing a fastball.

He said, “OK, I’ve got something for you.” It’s all about confidence, like with Howie. He’s got it now. In the second half, after he came back from Salt Lake, he was as hot as anybody. The man is a natural hitter. He’s got the ability to do some great things in this game.

I’m not in the Yankees’ clubhouse, so I have no idea what they’re thinking or feeling. We don’t care about what they do. We only care about what we do.

We definitely feel we can ride this wave and take another one tomorrow behind Scott Kazmir. The guy pitched great for us after coming over from the Rays.

Mathis, he has a lot of heart. He’s an old football player — you know, like me. When you’re a Division I recruit by a school like Florida State, you know you’re an athlete — and that’s Mathis. He’s got that bulldog in him, and he wants to win.

The playoffs is a totally different adrenaline and energy. Guys people aren’t expecting to see come through always shine. Guys like Mathis and Kendrick, they’re dangerous — and they showed it. Kendrick’s home run in the fifth inning got us going, changed the mood, like we had a chance. And then Vlad unloaded his shot.

As for my at-bat against Mariano Rivera in the 10th inning after Mathis doubled … not much I can say about that. He got us. He did what he always does, throwing me nothing but cutters. He threw me one that was yanked, and I tried to stay on it and make something happen. I hit it to Mark Teixeira for a force, and he got out of the inning. He’s Mariano Rivera. That’s what he does.

Mariano, that guy’s just too nasty. It’s not fair. What we need to do is get leads and keep them. That way we won’t have to deal with him.

When we left New York, I said I felt something was about to change. That’s what happened today. The Angels showed up and played the game with passion and purpose. We’ve got a lot of heart on this team, and we showed it today.

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13 Comments

Torii, today was so fun to watch and it was just such a rush to see you guys pull it off. I believe in each & every one of you. Angel baseball is truly a TEAM sport, and everyone eventually contributes to advance the club and make the fans so proud to be behind you. You’re awesome! All of you!

Great game Torii. Pettite sure is hard to read isn’t he? But I know that you guys have beaten Andy before, and one thing I’ve noticed is that you don’t stop your running game, and maybe that gets to him.

I would have loved to see you get a walk off against Mo but we’ll take this win any way we can. A flawless defensive effort in center field as usual too.

Good luck evening the series tomorrow.

Anyone that follows baseball knows that Mariano is just a plain freak. His stuff is unreal, so no worries Torii…Thats why the roster is what it is!! Never count out your bench players (if thats what we call them) and for everyone that wanted Vlade out of the game, CHILL!! This is a game of pickup. Sometimes the biggest bats go quiet, and the quiet players come up and EXPLODE!! Just like today! Great job Angles. Way to battle again…That Yankee lineup is relentless, yet the Halos never gave in! Way to get it done!
Lets do it again Tues!! You know we will all be there with our thunder sticks and rally monkey!!!
~mammajay22

Heck.”.Angels”..forgive this girl for the misspelling…
~mammajay22

Game 4 is YOU Torii! Great win today! Good Luck tomorrow!!!

Outstanding win today, men! So glad to be a lifelong fan of this ballclub. You have a real opportunity again this year of proving that great baseball is played in Southern California!

Please don’t hesitate to use the inside pitch. Backing those Yanks off the plate is a necessary component to success, imho.

All the best, guys!

I had to come back to your blog to thank you for a memorable moment in my life. I am so fortunate to have been at this afternoon’s game. it was unreal, so many tense moments and so much clutch play from both sides, that was baseball at its best.

You looked real frustrated after that at-bat when you were talking to alfredo griffin at first base knowing that you could have won the game there, but hey Mariano was pitching ridiculous. the man is a legend. But dont discount that ARod, Tex, and Jeter were covering the whole damn infield with their arms and legs during that sequence. I was up in the upper deck but had a great angle for each play and that was tough! dont look so down next time!!

But you have to give the shout out to Ervin Santana. Im not sure if you guys are close, but he has to get some love. He came in and shut them down 1-2-3 in like five minutes so that you could keep the pressure up. Without Ervin being so steady, and taking a backseat from starter to bullpen, you guys wouldnt have the same chemistry.

Good look tomorrow night

I had to come back to your blog to thank you for a memorable moment in my life. I am so fortunate to have been at this afternoon’s game. it was unreal, so many tense moments and so much clutch play from both sides, that was baseball at its best.

You looked real frustrated after that at-bat when you were talking to alfredo griffin at first base knowing that you could have won the game there, but hey Mariano was pitching ridiculous. the man is a legend. But dont discount that ARod, Tex, and Jeter were covering the whole damn infield with their arms and legs during that sequence. I was up in the upper deck but had a great angle for each play and that was tough! dont look so down next time!!

But you have to give the shout out to Ervin Santana. Im not sure if you guys are close, but he has to get some love. He came in and shut them down 1-2-3 in like five minutes so that you could keep the pressure up. Without Ervin being so steady, and taking a backseat from starter to bullpen, you guys wouldnt have the same chemistry.

Good look tomorrow night

How do you and your teammates feel about Mariano Rivera doctoring the ball today?

http://www.halosheaven.com/2009/10/19/1092390/mariano-rivera-caught-doctoring

If Fuentes could spit on the ball like that, you would never EVER have to think or yell NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO when he is set to deliver that lukewarm fastball.

Go get them tomorrow, watch out for the spitball.

Great, the real Angels showed up yesterday. Now the question is, when are YOU going to show up for this series, Torii?

Just wanted to say thanks for giving us such an exciting game yesterday. phew….what a thriller. Me and my family are going thru a rough time right now. Im in sales and business is slow, so im only making enough to pay some major bills to keep things running. I totally forgot my directv bill and they shut it off yesterday after the game. This really blows. I cant even pay $102 bill. Me and my son will be sitting in front of the computer cheering for you. All we can do is stay positive and have some hope. It ain’t over til it’s over.

Life-long Braves fan here – rooting for the Angels. Last night was a great win, and you guys need not hang you heads over Saturday night. You hung in there for 13 innings of ridiculous weather, and things just didn’t go your way. You can beat the Yankees!

I was in the stadium for the game yesterday and let me tell you. When Vladdy hit that home run in the 6th, there was electricity in the air. I felt it. Everyone felt it. And it was the same with Matthis’s game-winning double. I’m so glad I got to be a part of that. To see you win a huge victory. I’ll be watching on TV tonight, but I EXPECT to see more of the same!

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