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Hot Stone League

Larry Stone gives his take on a wide array of baseball issues and weighs in about the Mariners, too.

April 9, 2009 at 8:59 AM

Angels’ pitcher Nick Adenhart killed in car crash

adenhart.jpg

The Hagerstown (Md.) Herald-Mail, near Adenhart’s hometown of Williamsport, Md., has lots of tributes and photos.

UPDATE 11:15 A.M. Here’s a more detailed story from the Los Angeles Times, with confirmation that tonight’s game has been called off.

UPDATE 10:15: The Angels are considering postponing their scheduled game tonight with the A’s. I think that would be a wise move. No one on the Angels, certainly, is going to be in the mind frame to play a game.

This is an unbelievably tragic story that I’m having trouble processing. But here it is, from the Los Angeles Times.

Adenhart, who was a member of the Angels’ starting rotation at the outset of the season, pitched six scoreless innings last night in the Angels’ 6-4 loss to Oakland at Anaheim Stadium. He would have earned the victory had reliever Brian Fuentes not given up three runs in the ninth. It was just his fourth career start, but the Angels had very high hopes for the 22-year-old pitcher. MLB.com’s Lyle Spencer focused his game story on Adenhart’s strong outing.

Apparently, he was the victim of a hit-and-run driver that ran a red light in Fullerton shortly after midnight. The driver was eventually apprehended by police.

The Angels have suffered an inordinate amount of tragedy in their existence. This is their fourth player to die in a car accident, following infielder Chico Ruiz (1972), rookie reliever Bruce Heinbechner (1974) and shortstop Mike Miley (1977). In addition, reliever Minnie Rojas was paralyzed in a car accident that killed his wife and two of his three children.

Also, outfielder Lyman Bostock was murdered in 1978, rookie pitcher Dick Wantz died at age 25 of a brain tumor in 1965, and former reliever Donnie Moore shot his wife and then himself in 1989, three years after giving up the homer to Boston’s Dave Henderson that kept the Angels out of the World Series.

This one really hurts, having a 22-year-old daughter myself.

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