Angel Stadium sets return to full capacity
ANAHEIM -- Angel Stadium will return to full capacity on June 17 against the Tigers in accordance to the updated State of California and MLB health guidelines, the club announced Friday.
Single-game tickets will go on sale to the general public on May 28 at 9 a.m. PT, while registered users at Angels.com will have access on Thursday at 9 a.m. PT. The club will continue to adhere to California's expanded health protocols, including socially distanced seating pods at 25 percent capacity, for their next 12 games until June 17. Those tickets against the A's, Rangers, Mariners and Royals are already on sale.
“I think it’s awesome and great for everybody,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “We need to get back to our more normal patterns. We'll never really understand the social component of all this, too, and how important it is to all of our growth. So I'm really happy to hear that. I think it's great."
Starting on June 17, fans will be required to wear a mask unless they provide proof of being fully vaccinated or a recent negative COVID test. Fans do not need to wear masks while actively drinking or eating.
Maddon added that the players were pleased by the news as well, as they enjoy playing in front of large crowds at home. California is officially removing capacity limits at stadiums on June 15, so it affects the Dodgers, Padres, Giants and A’s as well.
"As a baseball team, it's wonderful to have a full house," Maddon said. "Our fans are so loud and exuberant and wonderful. And overall, it's just sending the right message as we move forward."
Rodriguez nearing return
Rookie reliever Chris Rodriguez threw a bullpen session on Tuesday and is getting close to returning from right shoulder inflammation that has kept him out of action since May 5. Rodriguez said his throwing sessions have been going well and that he expects to be activated soon.
"I'm feeling good, feeling great," Rodriguez said. "I'm ready to go back out. I don't like the IL and I want to get off it. Right now it's day to day. Just listening to the medical staff, but everything is feeling good and I'm confident it should be soon."
Getting Rodriguez back would be huge for the bullpen, as he was electric before the injury, posting a 2.30 ERA with 17 strikeouts and eight walks in 15 2/3 innings. He recorded more than three outs in six of his eight appearances, including going a career-high 3 1/3 innings against the Rangers on April 28.
"When he's in that bullpen, it's a huge difference on what we can or cannot do on a daily basis, matching up," Maddon said. "So let's get him back and get him well. He's got a quality arm, he's got great makeup, he's tough guy. I like all that about him."
• Left-hander Patrick Sandoval will start on Saturday, while right-hander Dylan Bundy gets the nod on Sunday. The Angels waited to announce their weekend starters because Bundy had been dealing with a minor foot injury. But he threw without any issues on Friday and was cleared to make his next start.
• Max Stassi continues to make progress with his concussion, but Maddon said he still doesn’t have a target date for the catcher's return. Stassi has been out since May 4.
• The organization is hosting the Angels 5K at Angel Stadium on Aug. 14. Runners will receive a commemorative race shirt, finisher medal and promotional items, with proceeds benefitting the Angels Baseball Foundation. Fans can register at angels.com/5K.