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The Angels fire manager Joe Maddon amid a 12-game losing streak

ANAHEIM, California – The Los Angeles Angels’ free fall from having one of the best records in the American League in a 12-game losing streak cost Joe Maddon his job on Tuesday.

General manager Perry Minasian recommended moving to owner Arte Moreno and then headed to Maddon’s house to break the news.

Third baseman Phil Nevin will be the interim coach for the rest of the season, starting Tuesday night when the Angels (27-29) host Boston.

“Looking at the last few days was when I started thinking about making a change. And I try not to make emotional decisions. I’ll be honest, I’ve been excited the last few days. There have been some very hard losses,” Minasian said.

Maddon, 68, was 130-148 with the Angels, who hired him before the 2020 season, shortened by coronavirus, for his dream job. Maddon spent three decades of his career as a Los Angeles player and coach before continuing with an impressive managerial career that included three Manager of the Year awards.

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Los Angeles were defeated 1-0 in Maddon’s last game by the Red Sox and starter Michael Wacha, who threw a three-hit game against the Halos star formation on Monday night. Los Angeles closed out a seven-game road trip to the East on Sunday with a 9-7 loss to Philadelphia after rookie Bryson Stott hit a three-run homer and two outs in the ninth inning. The Angels led 6-2 in the eighth inning before Bryce Harper tied in a grand slam.

“The last two weeks have been very tough. There hasn’t been a phase of the game where we’ve been good,” Minasian said.

The Angels have been on a 3-16 overall run since May 15, when they were 24-13 and tied for first place in the West AL.

The Los Angeles attack, which was among the best of the majors in the first six weeks, only scored 35 runs during its streak of 12 straight losses with a differential of minus -43. The Halos pitching staff became the ineffectiveness that plagued the last few seasons of the franchise, recording the worst effectiveness of the 6.31 AL during the streak.

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AL MVPs Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani fought. Trout only has one hit in his last 28 innings on the bat while Ohtani bats .180 (7 of 39) during the losing streak.

“It’s hard when you lose a manager or someone in general with whom you have a relationship,” Trout said. “Ultimately, we have to go out and play together. Everyone has to be responsible, myself included. The players have to go out and act.”

After finishing with defeat marks in the first two seasons of Maddon, the Angels started a strong 27-17 this year before their current losing streak began. They are one defeat away from tying the longest skid in franchise history, and the fall dropped them 8 and a half games behind Houston for the AL West lead after finishing in first place on May 15th.

“Obviously, that’s not all Joe’s fault. The players are partly to blame, because he was underperforming,” Ohtani said through an interpreter. “I just want to thank Joe. I appreciate everything you’ve done for me.”

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Ohtani flourished under Maddon, who prioritized releasing the talents of the two-sided Japanese star on both sides of the ball. Maddon worked with Ohtani to discover a workload that allowed him to shine as a hitter and pitcher.

Moreno’s big-budget club finished with six consecutive defeat records in the longest active skid of the majors despite a list topped by Trout and Ohtani, who never won a playoff game.

The Angels’ seven-year playoff drought is also linked to the third-longest in baseball, though they seemed well on their way to widening the field this fall ahead of their current confusing skid.

However, Los Angeles still has a chance. He started the day just 1 1/2 games from the American League playoff final.

The streak forced an end to what Maddon hoped would be the conclusion of a storybook for his career at the adoption home of the Pennsylvania native in Orange County. The brilliant and talkative head of the bench stood out as a coach for nine seasons in Tampa Bay and five more with the Chicago Cubs, who ended his 108-year drought in the World Series championship during his 2016 term.

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Maddon’s first season was only 60 games due to the coronavirus pandemic. Last year Trout played just 36 games before being sidelined in May due to a calf injury that ended the season.

Maddon has 1,382-1,216 in 19-season parts as a coach.

Nevin is the third Angels coach in just over four seasons since Moreno severed ties with Mike Scioscia, who led the Angels dugout for 19 years and won his only World Series championship. Maddon was the coach of Scioscia’s bench during that title season in 2002.

The Halos sacked coach Brad Ausmus after just a terrible season in late 2019, and the move seemed made because Maddon had just hit the market after parting ways with the Cubs. Moreno then fired CEO Billy Eppler and hired Minasian after the 2020 season, but the first general manager seemed to get along well with Maddon.

Nevin, 51, is the first Orange County native to handle the Angels. He played 12 major league seasons for six teams, including the Angels in 1998. He was never a coach above the Triple A level, but spent four seasons as the New York Yankees’ third-base coach before joining Maddon’s staff this season.

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“I think it’s going to be great,” Yankees coach Aaron Boone said. “I think it’s a great kind of baseball. He certainly paid his dues. He was probably close to getting a job on several different occasions where that runner was probably. -He arrives, but he spilled a lot in this game.”

Nevin said he spoke to Maddon on Tuesday, which helped reassure him.

“Joe was great and he told me to just take this and run with him and be the person I am, which I plan to do. That made it easier for me because it was an emotional day,” Nevin said. “There are ups and downs added to how the last 12 days have been.

“There is some excitement, but I know what today’s narrative is like. But it’s the group in that room. “

Maddon is the second coach to be fired this season. Philadelphia’s Joe Girardi was sacked last week and the Phillies swept the Angels.

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AP sports writer Dave Campbell contributed from Minneapolis.

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The Angels fire manager Joe Maddon amid a 12-game losing streak

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