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Angels, Anaheim agree to keep team in Angel Stadium through 2020

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The City of Anaheim approved a one-year extension to the Los Angeles Angels’ stadium lease, keeping the club in Angel Stadium in Anaheim through the 2020 season.

This gives the Angels and the city some breathing room as they try to come up with a long-term solution for what, at least from the Angels’ perspective is a stadium problem.

The upshot: the Angels have long wanted around $150-200 million in renovations and improvements to Angel Stadium, the fourth-oldest ballpark in the league. The City of Anaheim has no intention of paying for that. Preliminary talks for a new stadium with places like nearby Tustin, California went nowhere as taxpayers in California are generally adverse to any public funding of sports facilities. Which means that the Angels, realistically, have no other options barring moving completely out of Southern California, which they seem to have no desire to do whatsoever.

Last fall the club opted-out of their lease with Anaheim in order to avoid a provision that would’ve locked them in to the ballpark for the next decade. It was a procedural move, realistically, as there is nowhere else for them to play at the moment. They turned into year-to-year renters, practically speaking. This extension makes them two-year renters.

Two years in which Arte Moreno and the Angels can, once again, talk to Anaheim about how to improve Angel Stadium. Perhaps at some point soon the notion of Moreno either paying for such improvements himself or, alternatively, moving out of town, will crystalize in his mind as his only options.

Zack Wheeler hits first career homer

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Mets starter Zack Wheeler wasn’t content with just dominating the Phillies on the mound Tuesday night in Queens. The 28-year-old decided to have himself a three-RBI night at the plate, too, including his first career home run.

With the Mets already leading 3-0 with two outs in the bottom of the fourth inning, Wheeler lifted a first-pitch Zach Eflin fastball out to left-center field, landing well beyond the 370-foot sign on the wall. Wheeler had previously helped his own cause, lacing a two-run double down the right field line off of Eflin in the second inning.

Wheeler entered the night with 22 hits in 194 career trips to the plate. Of his 22 hits, five went for extra bases (all doubles). On the mound, through six innings, Wheeler has held the Phillies scoreless on five hits with no walks and 11 strikeouts.

Todd Frazier broke the game open in the fifth inning, hitting a grand slam off of Drew Anderson to push the Mets’ lead to 8-0. If the Phillies lose tonight, they will have lost five of their last six games.