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News » A's mourn tragic loss of a young Angel 2009-04-10

A's mourn tragic loss of a young Angel 2009-04-10

A's mourn tragic loss of a young Angel  2009-04-10
ANAHEIM On Wednesday night, the A's watched Nick Adenhart throw six scoreless innings at them, impressed by the ability of one of the major leagues' brightest young pitching prospects.

By Thursday morning, they were trying to wrap their minds around Adenhart's tragic death in a hit-and-run accident, which happened about two hours after the game.

"I faced him a few times in the minor leagues, I got to know him a little bit," A's outfielder Travis Buck said. "I saw him (Wednesday) night after the game. I saw him in the lobby between clubhouses before everybody went their separate ways around 11 o'clock. You wake up the next morning and see that, and you get chills up and down your spine."

Adenhart was killed along with two others when a minivan struck the car he was in at an intersection in nearby Fullerton around 12:30 a.m. Thursday.

Thursday night's series finale between the A's and Angels was postponed. A makeup date has yet to be announced.

By Thursday afternoon, fans had set up a memorial to Adenhart in the large plaza that leads into Angel Stadium's main entrance.

There were flowers spread all around, along with an Adenhart jersey. Somebody left a sign that read, "#34, one more Angel in heaven." Adenhart's agent, Scott Boras, broke down at the podium during a news conference at Angel Stadium.

The A's gathered at the ballpark and left at about 2:30 p.m. to catch an earlier-than-expected charter back to the Bay Area, where they'll play their home opener tonight against the Seattle Mariners .

An extensive pregame ceremony already was planned to honor four Oakland police officers recently killed in duty. An A's official said the team also would acknowledge Adenhart.

Buck struck out twice against Adenhart on Wednesday. That was part of an 0-for-4 night that was still occupying Buck's thoughts Thursday morning until his brother sent him a text message about the accident.

"I get up and dwell on my night I go 0-for-4 with three strikeouts then you see something like this, and reality is more important," Buck said.

A's closer Brad Ziegler learned of the news when he received a text message from an Angels player around 6 a.m.

"It could have happened to one of our guys," Ziegler said. "It was a late game, and I'm pretty sure at 12 o'clock (Wednesday) night, not every guy on our team was in their hotel room. Maybe they were just out at dinner. It's not like they did anything wrong. Nick was just (riding in a car), and lives are forever changed."

Adenhart's big league debut came against the A's on May 1, 2008, when he gave up five runs in two innings. He made just two more appearances in 2008 and spent most of the season in the minors.

On Wednesday, he was a different pitcher.

"We had heard so many things about him," A's third baseman Eric Chavez said. "Obviously, (Wednesday) night he kind of looked like he was putting it together. It's just very unfortunate."

"We are deeply saddened to learn of the tragic death of Nick Adenhart and others involved in this morning's accident," A's president Mike Crowley said in a statement. "Our hearts and prayers go out to their families, as well as the entire Los Angeles Angels' organization.

"As he demonstrated only last night, Nick was a very gifted pitcher with a promising future. For that future to be cut short is not only a loss for the Angels but for all of Major League Baseball."

Looking at potential makeup dates for Thursday's game, Aug. 27 is a possibility. It's a day off for the A's and Angels, and it leads into a three-game series between the teams in Anaheim on Aug. 28-30.

Contact Joe Stiglich at'S-Angels, ppd.TODAY: Mariners (Ryan Rowland-Smith 5-3 last season) at A's (Brian Anderson 0-0), 7:05 p.m. TV: CSNCA. Radio: 860-AM; 1640-AMINSIDE Anderson's major league debut to come in home opener tonight. Page 2ANGELS pITCHER KILLED in CAR crash: Los Angeles Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart, right, and two others were killed by a suspected drunk driver early Thursday, just hours after he had started on the mound against the Oakland A's. Story, Page 2

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: April 10, 2009

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