Simmons injured the ankle when he leapt toward first base and it ankle rolled off the back of the bag. It looked similar to the left ankle sprain he suffered at first base last year that caused him to miss more than a month. Simmons also suffered an ankle injury in 2018 that caused him to miss only eight games. The Angels are unsure how long he will be out this time.
"You could tell it was bothering him, but he was still very optimistic,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “You know, ‘I'll be all right. Give me a couple days’ -- that kind of conversation. Everybody’s telling me this is historic with him, and so he probably knows how to deal with it. But he was upbeat, if that's possible, walking out of the ballpark yesterday.”
David Fletcher started at shortstop on Tuesday and figures to see regular action there until Simmons returns.
“I always feel comfortable at short. It's where I played my whole life until a couple years ago,” said Fletcher, who also saw time at second base, third and the outfield corners last season. “I still take ground balls there in the offseason, and over the quarantine period. And even in the summer camp a little bit. So, yeah, I feel prepared.”
Rengifo gives the Angels another player who can play short. He was a late arrival to Summer Camp for undisclosed reasons and then suffered a hamstring injury before the season opener. But he played in intrasquad games at the alternate training site in Long Beach and was declared ready, which adds to the club’s depth. Maddon, though, mostly saw Rengifo at second base during the spring.
“Of course, he can play shortstop, but I can't tell you to what level yet,” Maddon said. “But, absolutely, he can play all over the place, which I think is going to be a strong suit. The big thing with him is that he hits from both sides, and that's what makes him very valuable. So, yes, he needs opportunity.”
Teheran’s outing pushed back
Right-hander Julio Teheran was scheduled to pitch in an intrasquad game in Long Beach on Tuesday, but he instead threw a light bullpen session and will pitch on Thursday. The Angels said the change wasn’t because of an injury but for planning reasons because Teheran’s next start after Thursday is expected to be in a regular-season game. Teheran, who was a late arrival to camp after testing positive for COVID-19 in late June, is scheduled to throw three innings on Thursday.