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Angels fans bounce back
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World  Series
10/20/2002 7:38 pm ET 
Angels fans bounce back
Disappointment of Game 1 loss quickly forgotten
By Mychael Urban / MLB.com

Kobe Bryant, who plays for the NBA's L.A. Lakers, bangs the ThunderStix before Game 2. (Amy Sancetta/AP)
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- In the generally jovial world of baseball, there are few sights sadder than that of deflated ThunderStix. Especially at Edison Field, where frivolity is a way of life.

But there they were, a couple of hours after Game 1 on Saturday night. The Giants had not only taken the air out of the Red Sea's sails, they'd taken the air out of the bright red balloons that fans bang to create a cacophony that can at times rival Jim Carrey's squeal in "Dumb and Dumber" on the uncomfortable meter.

Wanna hear the most annoying sound in the world?

They were everywhere. In bathrooms, in the outfield, and strewn across the concourses of a very quiet stadium. ThunderStix no more, left behind by disappointed Disneyites.

Back to WorldSeries.com But like their boys of summer and now autumn, Angels fans are a resilient lot. Less than 24 hours after Robb Nen tucked the Rally Monkey in for the night with a 1-2-3 ninth, the Red Sea was roiling again. The ThunderStix were back, and so seemed to be everyone's sense of humor.

The best sign: "THE MONKEY IS MAD NOW. BE VERY AFRAID."

A close second: "RIGHT WHERE WE WANT THEM."

The second sign is a reference to Anaheim's knack for coming from behind. Not just in game, but in series. They lost Game 1 of their American League Division Series, they lost Game 1 of the AL Championship Series, and now they've lost Game 1 of the World Series.

"Obviously this isn't a blueprint, to go out and lose Game 1 of any series," said Angels manager Mike Scioscia. "It is the third time it happened, and we've handled it OK the first two times, so we'll see if we can do that again."

The fans sure think so. The excitement in the air before Game 2 on Sunday was every bit as electric as it was the day before. And the fireworks hadn't even started.

This is a Disney production, remember, so there's entertainment everywhere you turn. And much of it comes from the massive fake rock formation beyond the center field wall. The fountains spew to the beat of a peppy music, and each big moment for the home team is punctuated by explosions, sparklers and some good old-fashioned rockets' red glare.

The only drawback is the smoke that follows. After Troy Glaus hit his second homer of the night Saturday, the ensuing cloud that wafted over the bleachers in left field made you wonder if Cheech and Chong were co-hosting some sort of bash beneath the rocks with Jeff Spicoli.

But what's a little smoke in your eyes when those eyes are trained on the greatest show in baseball? The Monkey is mad, people. The fun's just begun.

Mychael Urban is a reporter for MLB.com and can be reached at murban@oaklandathletics.com. This story was not subject to approval by Major League Baseball or its clubs.





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