NEW YORK -- When the Angels signed Russell Branyan to add a left-handed presence to the middle of the lineup in Kendrys Morales' absence, there was talk that he'd form a platoon with rookie Mark Trumbo at first base.
Trumbo is doing everything in his considerable power to show that he's just as effective against right-handed pitching as lefties. Trumbo has hit for a higher average (.273 vs. .245) against lefties, but with more power against right-handers. His .477 slugging mark against righties features nine of his 12 homers and eight of his 13 doubles. He is slugging .455 against lefties.
On Saturday night, surfacing in the middle of the game in a double switch, Trumbo delivered two of the Angels' five hits against righty Mike Pelfry -- a solo homer estimated at 422 feet to right center and a line-drive single to right.
"That's his kind of talent," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said, "his ability to drive it to every part of the park, especially here. He got extended [on the home run], that's for sure."
Branyan, one of the game's strongest hitters, is batting .333 against lefties and .129 against righties in what Scioscia would call a small sample size.
"It was to help us match up in some areas, not necessarily [a platoon] with Mark," Scioscia said regarding the acquisition of Branyan. "Hopefully, it's going to create depth and get some deeper offensive looks against right-handed pitching."
Hunter, Abreu historically Interleague beasts
NEW YORK -- Torii Hunter doesn't pay a great deal of attention to his personal numbers. The right fielder looked surprised on Sunday morning, when he was informed that he ranks eighth in RBIs in the history of Interleague Play, with 144.
"Wow," Hunter said, eyes wide. "In history? That's crazy. I've been playing in the wrong league all these years."
He busted up in laughter, drawing glances from teammates in a quiet visitors clubhouse at Citi Field an hour before Sunday's series finale against the Mets.
Hunter was a .292 career Interleague hitter, with 40 homers to go with his 144 RBIs entering Sunday's game.
Asked how he would explain his career-long success against the National League, Hunter, for once, was stumped.
"I really don't know," he said. "Maybe I like the parks. Maybe it's just being in a different environment, getting a fresh look at things. Hard to say. But I definitely like it."
- 131 wins
- 121 wins
"We come from places where it's hot -- Arkansas, and Venezuela for Bobby," Hunter said. "It only makes sense that we'd be more comfortable playing when it's warm. We've had a lot of cold, wet weather this season."
Hunter is 4-for-8 in the two games against the Mets and is batting an uncharacteristic .233. Abreu is a .308 career Interleague hitter, sixth all-time in hits (256), fifth in on-base percentage (.418) and ninth in RBIs (143, one behind Hunter).
Scioscia keeps former 'mate Carter in thoughts
NEW YORK -- Mike Scioscia and Gary Carter are members in excellent standing in the catching fraternity, and they were teammates for a season with the Dodgers after Carter's glory years in Montreal with the Expos and in New York with the Mets.
Scioscia said on Sunday that his thoughts are with the Hall of Famer as "The Kid" deals with the tumors that were discovered on his brain.
"I have not talked to him since his diagnosis," Scioscia said. "Needless to say, we all want to get word to him of our thoughts and prayers. Gary has a very strong faith, and hopefully, he'll get some good news as he starts to get treatment."
Carter was one of the game's premier two-way catchers, an offensive weapon as well as a respected defender. He batted fourth for the classic 1986 Mets World Series champions and for some great teams in Montreal.
"He was a great catcher," Scioscia said. "Some of his years in Montreal maybe slid under the radar as far as the media and some fans, and what he did for the Mets was exceptional. This guy caught 150 games a year. He played at a high level defensively and hit in the middle of the lineup. He was just a terrific ballplayer."
Angels set to get Callaspo back in lineup
NEW YORK -- Infielder Alberto Callaspo is expected to be back in the lineup for the next series at Florida against the Marlins, while reliever Fernando Rodney is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list on Friday, when the Angels open a three-game series against the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium.
"Alberto did cuts, ran, and feels great," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said of Callaspo, who pinch-hit on Saturday night in his first appearance since June 11, when he pulled his left hamstring. "We'll see when we can get him back in the lineup.
"Fernando has been throwing on flat ground and will be throwing off the mound soon."
Rodney, a setup man for closer Jordan Walden, has been on the DL since June 13 with an upper back strain.
Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.