8/2/2013 9:39 P.M. ET
Nelson making most of opportunity at third base
By William Boor / MLB.com
ANAHEIM -- When the Angels traded Alberto Callaspo to Oakland on July 30, the auditions began for the team's next third baseman.
Although Grant Green, who was acquired for Callaspo, and prospect Luis Jimenez may be options in the future, Chris Nelson is getting the first opportunity to show the Angels what he can do.
"I'm excited about the opportunity and I'm going to put my best effort forward," Nelson said.
Throughout his career, the majority of which was spent with the Rockies, Nelson has played all over the field, but third base certainly is not foreign to him.
"Down in the Minors I was playing shortstop, I came up as a shortstop," Nelson said. "Second, I played second for the Rockies for a while. Played third for the Rockies for a while, got used to playing all three positions."
Nelson put his words into action as he made several strong defensive plays in the Angels' 8-2 win over the Blue Jays on Thursday night, something that was not lost on manager Mike Scioscia.
"He made some tough plays look easy last night, and that's important to us," Scioscia said.
Friday was Nelson's 10th game with the Angels this season, and Scioscia has been pleased with Nelson's talent.
"He has a very strong skill set and a skill set that says he can play in the Major Leagues," Scioscia said. "What a player does with an opportunity, how productive he is, remains to be seen. Chris has been waiting for an opportunity for a while and he is getting one now."
Calhoun adjusting to leadoff spot for Angels
ANAHEIM -- In Kole Calhoun's first stint with the Angels, he had to learn what life was like as a Major Leaguer.
Now, in his second trip to the big leagues, the native of Buckeye, Ariz., is making another adjustment -- hitting leadoff.
"It's definitely something new, but it's something I'm not completely new to," Calhoun said. "Been in there a few times down in Triple-A. It's not 'my spot,' but I've been in the role a little bit."
Calhoun was penciled into the leadoff spot Friday for the second time in his Major League career, and if it goes anything like his first time hitting leadoff, Calhoun and the Angels will be happy.
During Thursday's 8-2 win over the Blue Jays, Calhoun went 2-for-4, recording his first career multi-hit game. He also recorded his first career stolen base and scored a pair of runs.
Calhoun may not be the prototypical leadoff hitter, but Angels manager Mike Scioscia likes what the 25-year-old brings to the top of the lineup.
"I think Kole has made great strides this year with what he did in Triple-A, that shows he can be not only a table setter, but a really effective hitter," Scioscia said. "He's got some power, more alley power, I think."
Since he was recalled on July 28, Calhoun is 4-for-13 (.308), and whether he continues to lead off or is placed somewhere else in the order, he says his mindset will remain the same.
"I just try to go out there and play how I usually play," Calhoun said.
Scioscia hoping discipline helps keep game clean
ANAHEIM -- Just like the rest of the baseball community, the Angels are aware that suspensions related to the Biogenesis clinic are likely to be issued in the coming days.
However, manager Mike Scioscia does not anticipate any news regarding his club and hopes the punishments help keep the game clean.
"You're interested in it, and we hope it has no bearing on our club and we don't anticipate anything," Scioscia said. "It continues to be a black eye for baseball and I think the sooner a resolution can come, if any suspensions are handed down, get them started and get it behind players and baseball."
Scioscia said he is unsure if stiffer penalties would keep performance-enhancing drugs out of the game but believes the responsibility is on the players.
Regardless of what it takes to get there, Scioscia, like many others, simply wants players to do it the right way.
"I would hope that eventually players understand that the hard work and sweat is what builds a ballplayer," Scioscia said. "If you're not happy with being the best player you can on hard work and sweat, then you're not going to get the opportunity to play the game if you are on some performance-enhancing drugs."
• Mike Trout did not jog out to the outfield Friday night, instead making his first career start at designated hitter.
Scioscia admitted Trout may be a little "stiff," but otherwise stated everything is fine.
"When you're playing hard every day, it's good to get off your feet once in a while," Scioscia said. "It's a good day for him."
• Jason Vargas will continue his rehab with a simulated game Saturday afternoon.
• Angels prospect Mark Sappington has been promoted from Class A Inland Empire to Double-A Arkansas. Sappington, ranked as the No. 6 prospect in the Angels' organization according to MLB.com, was 11-4 with a 3.37 ERA for Inland Empire.
• The Angels and Wells Fargo are hosting a canned food drive through Sunday at Angel Stadium.
The Second Harvest Food Bank will have collection bins in front of the stadium through the second inning of all games this weekend.
Everyone who donates will receive an Angels team photo, and those who donate 10 canned food items or $10 will receive two tickets to an upcoming Angels game (while supplies last).
William Boor is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.