He can’t be sure how long his time in the major leagues will last, but after playing more than 500 games in the Orioles’ farm system, outfielder Matt Angle was excited to get his first call to the big leagues over the weekend.
The 25-year-old Angle, a seventh-round draft pick out of Ohio State in 2007, was batting .266 with seven doubles, four homers, 20 steals and 29 RBIs in 81 games with Triple-A Norfolk.
But he was batting .320 since June 1 and hit .380 in his last 16 games with the Tides. Angle is soaking it all in these days, his first few days ever in the major leagues.
“It’s been great, we’ve been able to get a couple of wins. Pretty exciting,” he said.
Angle tried to make it seem like just another game when he took the field Sunday and Tuesday at Camden Yards against Cleveland and Boston.
“As much as possible, you try. Been trying to keep the same routine, do everything the same as much as possible,” Angle said.
There are certain things the Orioles know they can get from Angle. They include good defense, speed, some base stealing ability and a player that is fundamentally sound.
He has played almost exclusively in center field in the last few years in the minors, but started in left field twice since his arrival in Baltimore.
“The reads are a little different and the ball comes of the bat a little different,” he said. “There is a little more positioning. You have to know to shade to the line or the gap on certain hitters.”
In 2009, Angle was among the Carolina League stolen base leaders when he swiped 40 for Single-A Frederick. In 505 career minor league games, he has 162 steals.
He is out to make a positive impression on Buck Showalter and his coaches, but he said, you really have the chance to do that every day you play pro ball.
“Anytime you put on the uniform, you have a chance to make an impression. Trying not to put additional pressure on myself. There is pressure every day to win and there is pressure every at bat to have a good at-bat, it’s hard enough there. So you try not to put that on yourself,” he said.
One thing Angle won’t do is try to hit homers. It’s not his game. In fact, he had just 13 extra-base hits and a slugging percentage of .337 this year for Norfolk. He is mostly a singles hitter and he won’t try to do too much with the lumber here now with the Orioles.
“I have to keep playing the game that got me here. Try not to do too much. Whether it’s bunting or having a good at-bat, putting the ball in play with two strikes. Don’t try to do too much,” he said.