The Angels are going to be without their primary setup man for at least a week, and possibly the remainder of the regular season.
Joe Smith sprained his left ankle Saturday while walking down a flight of eight marble steps at the Angels’ team hotel in Minnesota. X-rays turned up negative for any fractures, but Smith was in a walking boot and crutches on Sunday.
“Joe is a huge part of our bullpen,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia told Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register. “A huge part of what we need to do. It’s tough. It creates a void when he’s not there.”
Look for 23-year-old Trevor Gott to handle most of the eighth-inning looks ahead of closer Huston Street. Fernando Salas could also work into that mix, though he’s struggled over the last couple of weeks.
Smith, 31, owns a 3.71 ERA and 54/19 K/BB ratio in 63 innings this season for the Angels, who are just one game back of the Astros for the second American League Wild Card entering play Sunday.