03/26/10 7:48 PM ET
Reckling impressive in duel with Lincecum
Young left-hander rocketing up Angels system
By Lyle Spencer / MLB.com
2010 Spring Training - Los Angeles Angels
News & Features
- Star-laden Angels, Dodgers drawing national attention
- Madson to travel with team, continue rehab on road
- Worth noting
- After rough start to spring, 'pen turning it around
- Blanton impressive, but Angels held to just two hits
Sights & Sounds
Spring Training Info
"They told me Tuesday I was going to throw [against the Giants], and I was excited. Getting to pitch against Tim Lincecum, against big league hitters, that's a great feeling."His game plan was to keep his 92-95 mph fastball, sharp curveball and changeup down in the strike zone. Mission accomplished. "I thought he did a great job with his fastball/breaking ball combination, then bringing the change into it," Scioscia said. "His stuff's for real." Giants manager Bruce Bochy is a believer. "I like him," Bochy said. "He's got a good, live arm and command. He was impressive out there." With a pair of groundouts, Reckling kept Aaron Rowand at third base after a leadoff double in the first. Half of the lefty's 14 outs came on the ground, two on strikeouts. Hideki Matsui gloved a fly ball in left, his first chance with the Angels. Hunter handled two fly balls in the fifth before a walk, double and single ended Reckling's memorable afternoon in the sun. "Today he was trying to keep the ball down and he did," Hunter said. "You can see the adjustments he's made since last spring. That tells you a lot about him." Reckling played basketball at St. Benedict's Prep High School in New Jersey but always knew baseball was his future. Taken in the eighth round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, he has excelled as the youngest player on his team at four levels. He attributes his uncommon maturity to his father's insistence that he challenge himself in his formative years. "When I was younger, my dad always had me playing with older competition," Reckling said. "When I was 14, I was playing with guys 17, 18. That helped me tremendously." He's still learning from the older guys. Reckling, who turns 21 on May 22, spent part of the offseason in the Dallas area training with Hunter and absorbing life lessons from the Angels' leader. "My wife even likes him," Hunter said, grinning. "He's a good kid. He's like a little brother in the clubhouse." There are unmistakable parallels with the late Nick Adenhart, who preceded Reckling as the prized pitching prospect in the Angels' system. "You see the same thing with Trevor," Hunter said. "Nick had great stuff and was a good kid. It was promised, and it was shortened. Everybody takes Trevor under his wing. I've seen Scott Kazmir, [Jered] Weaver always on him, letting him know he belongs." Trevor Reckling is on the way. It's just a matter of when he arrives.
Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.