Mike Trout back in Angels’ lineup following heel scare

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Angels center fielder Mike Trout missed his first game of the 2015 season on Tuesday night against the Twins because of soreness in his left heel. But he claimed it was only a minor issue and he is back in the starting lineup Wednesday in the second game of a three-game set versus Minnesota.

Trout, 23, is batting .307/.400/.614 with 28 home runs and 57 RBI in 395 plate appearances this season for the American League West-leading Angels. He ranks second in FanGraphs’ version of WAR, only behind 22-year-old Nationals slugger Bryce Harper. The future is now, people.

Trout was named the MVP of last week’s 2015 All-Star Game at Cincinnati’s Great American Ball Park.

A’s coach apologizes for apparent Nazi salute

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OAKLAND, Calif. — Oakland Athletics bench coach Ryan Christenson has apologized for raising his arm during a postgame celebration in what looked like a Nazi salute.

Christenson made the gesture while greeting closer Liam Hendriks following the A’s 6-4 win over the Texas Rangers on Thursday.

Hendriks immediately pushed Christenson’s arm down and cameras then showed him laughing and briefly raising his arm a second time.

Christenson faced criticism after video of the gesture circulated on social media.

“I made a mistake and will not deny it,” Christenson said in a statement issued through the team. “Today in the dugout I greeted players with a gesture that was offensive. In the world today of COVID, I adapted our elbow bump, which we do after wins, to create some distance with the players. My gesture unintentionally resulted in a racist and horrible salute that I do not believe in. What I did is unacceptable and I deeply apologize.”

The A’s called the gesture “offensive” and apologized for it.

“We do not support or condone this gesture or the racist sentiment behind it,” the team said in a statement. “This is incredibly offensive, especially in these times when we as a club and so many others are working to expose and address racial inequities in our country. We are deeply sorry that this happened on our playing field.”

The 46-year-old Christenson played six years in the majors from 1998-2003. He later spent several years coaching in the minors before becoming bench coach for the A’s in 2018.