Prospect Taylor Ward set for major league debut with Angels

first_img“He’s going to get a good chance to play,” Scioscia said. “It’s tough to project how much playing time a guy will get because you’re still looking for production and performance. We don’t want to give him too much where a young kid is swallowed by the experience, but we think he’s ready for it and he’ll get a chance to meet the challenge.”Sign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.Ward, 24, was the Angels’ first-round pick in 2015, as a catcher. His stock dropped as he struggled in his first years in the farm system, with neither his offense nor his defensive living up to expectations.However, this season the Angels moved him from behind the plate to third, and he blossomed.He hit .345 with a .973 OPS at Double-A, and then .352 with a .979 OPS at Triple-A, earning the call to the majors.Keith Johnson, his manager at Triple-A, said he thinks being freed of the responsibility of catching helped his bat come to life. “Playing third base is still a mental position, but not so much as a catcher,” said Johnson, who is now up as a coach with the major league staff. “I think it freed his mind up a little. He’s also probably fresher.”As for his defense at third, Johnson said Ward has also “come a lot further in a short period of time than I thought he would. … He’s taken to it pretty good so far.”Related Articles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield SAN DIEGO — Taylor Ward dressed in a corner of the Angels clubhouse on Monday, in front of a locker with no name plate.Ward was at the doorstep, but not yet through the door, to fulfill his dream – and the dream of Angels fans starved to see the touted prospect play in the majors.The Angels brought the third baseman up from Triple-A on Monday, in order to activate him for his big-league debut on Tuesday. The extra day allows him to get his bearings in the new surroundings before he needs to play.Starting Tuesday, expect him to get regular starts at third base, although Manager Mike Scioscia wouldn’t commit to just how regularly. Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

Continue reading