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11/30/09 5:30 PM EST
Halos share purse with Adenhart's estate
Team votes to split postseason winnings with late pitcher
By Lyle Spencer / MLB.com
ANAHEIM -- Putting their money where their hearts are, the Angels have voted to send a full share of their postseason purse to the estate of Nick Adenhart, the young pitcher whose death in an auto accident on April 9 stunned the organization and the baseball world. Formed from 60 percent of gate receipts from each of the three tiers of the postseason -- the first three games of the American League Division Series and the first four games of the AL Championship Series and World Series -- the players' pool was divided among 12 teams. For sweeping Boston in the ALDS and taking the champion Yankees to six games in the ALCS, the Angels' total shares amount came to $7,088,773.93. They voted 43 full shares, coming to $138,038.57 each, along with 7.995 partial shares and four cash awards. Adenhart was killed along with companions Courtney Stewart and Henry Pearson when their car was broadsided at a Fullerton, Calif., intersection early on April 9 by an alleged drunk driver now facing multiple felony charges, including murder. Jon Wilhite, the lone survivor of the crash, is making a remarkable recovery from April 15 surgery to reattach his skull and spinal column. Wilhite threw out the ceremonial first pitch in Oakland and in Anaheim and benefited from fundraisers sponsored by the A's and Angels and led by his former teammate at Cal State Fullerton, A's catcher Kurt Suzuki. The Angels kept Adenhart, their budding 22-year-old star, in their thoughts all season, maintaining a locker for him at home and on the road. When they clinched the AL West title at Angel Stadium, they went to the outfield mural memorializing Adenhart for a rousing tribute. Adenhart's final performance was six shutout innings against the A's at Angel Stadium the night of April 8, just hours before the crash. "We all miss Nick, every day," said Angels catcher Bobby Wilson. "He was one of my best friends, just one of the greatest guys in the world. He was very smart and dedicated, and he had a great sense of humor. He was on his way to great things. "There was a group of us who were always together when we were playing in the Minor Leagues, and it hit all of us very hard. It was such a tragedy, losing three young people like that. "Nick's always in our hearts and always will be. It's good that there was a survivor. We all wish Jon the best." The Angels organization created the Nick Adenhart Award to go each season to the team's pitcher of the year. The first winner this season was Jered Weaver, another of Adenhart's close friends. "Winning that award is such a great honor," Weaver said, "since it was named for such a special person. Nick will always be with us." The champion Yankees divided more than $21 million in postseason shares, with each of 46 full shares coming to a record $365,052.73.
Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.