Brawl fallout: Montgomery, Nevin and Bradley

June 30th, 2022

This story was excerpted from Rhett Bollinger’s Angels Beat newsletter. To read the full newsletter, click here. And subscribe to get it regularly in your inbox.

ANAHEIM -- After dismissing manager Joe Maddon on June 7, the Angels turned to Phil Nevin as their interim manager for the rest of the season. But with Nevin now suspended for 10 games for his involvement in Sunday’s brawl with the Mariners, the Angels now have Ray Montgomery serving as their acting manager.

Montgomery was the skipper for Monday’s series opener against the White Sox, as the Angels picked up a much-needed 4-3 win. Nevin, though, gets credit for the win as the manager, but Montgomery was still excited to preside over a win in his debut as acting manager. But it’s also still unclear who will manage on Sunday and Tuesday when Montgomery begins serving his two-game suspension.

“It’s nice when it works out,” Montgomery said. “It’s hard to win every night. That team over there is very talented. Whoever you play on any given night is extremely talented. But they have a Hall of Famer manager [in Tony La Russa] and a great staff that I know and respect very well. So, to get through that with the help of everybody here was huge.”

Nevin, who began his suspension on Monday and can return against the Orioles on July 9, explained that he can still be around the club before and after games, but that he can’t be in the dugout or communicate with the staff during games. He spent Monday’s game in general manager Perry Minasian’s suite and said it was hard knowing he couldn’t be in the dugout with his players.

“It’s disappointing certainly, just knowing that I’m just getting started and can’t be around the players,” Nevin said. “It hurts not being around them. But I am here. I just can’t be here for the game. But Ray and I talk a lot before the game. The suite isn’t very big, but I was still walking around. It was harder than I expected. It was nerve-wracking. But the way the guys responded and played and the job the staff did, I was proud of everybody.”

Nevin also noted that he’ll now have to watch the first two games against the Orioles in the stands instead of managing against his son, Tyler, who is currently Baltimore’s everyday third baseman. Nevin joked that being able to enjoy those first two games as a father in the stands is the only good thing that came from the suspension.

“I joked that I always wanted to just see a game with him playing and the timing actually works out OK,” Nevin said. “It’s the only positive from this.”

Sunday’s brawl also had another after-effect on Tuesday, when it was announced that right-hander Archie Bradley suffered a fractured right elbow after falling while trying to go over the dugout railing to join the fracas. It’s another blow for the Angels, as Bradley will be shut down from throwing for at least four weeks and is expected to miss roughly two months with the injury.

“With the way he’s been throwing the ball recently and what he brings to the clubhouse, it’s a huge loss,” Montgomery said. “In the short-term, guys are going to have to step up. I think we’ve done a good job all year of picking up other guys. We’ll miss him, for sure, but the guys down there know what they need to do.”