Angels manager Mike Scioscia hopes to meet with Josh Hamilton this week

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Things are ugly between the Angels and Josh Hamilton right now, but manager Mike Scioscia told Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times today that he hopes to have a “face-to-face” meeting with the embattled outfielder while the team is in Houston later this week for a series against the Astros.

An arbitrator ruled that Hamilton will not be punished for his recent drug relapse, but Angels owner Arte Moreno recently refused to say whether he’ll play for the team again and even indicated that they could attempt to recoup some of his salary. However, Scioscia only appears concerned about his well-being:

“Everyone’s been in touch with Josh,” Scioscia said. “The concern is that Josh is getting the help and support he needs right now. That’s first and foremost.”

DiGiovanna was told by a team official that Hamilton hasn’t reached out about visiting the team at Minute Maid Park. Scioscia isn’t sure if any other coaches or players will join him if the meeting occurs away from the stadium.

Hamilton, who is currently working his way back from February shoulder surgery, is owed $83 million from 2015-2017.

Blue Jays clinch playoff berth with Orioles’ loss to Red Sox

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TORONTO — The Blue Jays clinched a postseason berth Thursday without taking the field.

Toronto was assured of an AL wild card berth when the Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3.

If Toronto holds its current position as the first of the AL’s three wild cards, the Blue Jays would open a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre next week.

“These guys are excited to be in this position,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said after Wednesday’s 8-3 loss to the New York Yankees. “You’ve got three really good pitchers lined up against a good Boston team, playing at home. So I think it’s more excitement more than it’s nerves or anything. I think the guys are going to come out and be ready to roll on Friday night.”

Toronto became the fourth AL team to clinch a playoff berth, joining division champions Houston, the Yankees and Cleveland. The Astros and Yankees have first-round byes.

The Blue Jays last went to the playoffs in 2020, when they were knocked out with two straight losses to Tampa Bay.

Eight of the 12 berths in the expanded postseason have been clinched: The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis earned division titles, and Atlanta and the New York Mets are assured no worse the wild cards while still competing to win the NL East. The Dodgers have a first-round bye.