Conger off to fast start, but not the Angels

April 2, 2014

Korean American catcher goes 2 for 4 and throws out a runner 
But Angels lose two straight at home to Mariners 8-3

Hank conger went 2 for 4 in his first game of 2014 season.

Hank conger went 2 for 4 in his first game of 2014 season.

By Lee Kyutae

The 26-year-old Korean American switch-hitting catcher Hank Conger got two hits and even threw out a runner in his first start of the season, but they weren’t nearly enough to save the Los Angeles Angels from another slow start.

The Angels are the team that killed their playoff hopes early by going 17-32 in the previous two Aprils.

Conger, whose Korean name is Choi Hyun, got his first starting assignment Tuesday night at home against the Seattle Mariners and had a decent game.

He led off the third inning with a single to left, immediately after the Angels fell behind 4-0, but got erased at second when the next hitter, Eric Aybar, grounded into fielder’s choice to first.

In the fourth inning, he tried to keep the rally going with a single to right — after Raul Ibanez’s two-run homer and Howie Kendrick getting on base — thanks to the Mariners shortstop’s error.  But Aybar and Kole Calhoun both went down swinging to end the inning.

Conger popped out to short in the seventh and rolled into game ending double play in the ninth.

Conger did stop Justin Smoak from stealing second base in the first inning, but allowed one in the ninth inning to Dustin Ackely.