Per­ci­val to at­tempt a come­back

Los Angeles Times - - Sports - By Mike DiGio­vanna

Troy Per­ci­val made it of­fi­cial Fri­day: The for­mer An­gels closer, who missed most of 2005 and all of 2006 be­cause of a fore­arm in­jury and re­tired from base­ball in April, will at­tempt a come­back.

The 37-year-old right-han­der, who amassed 324 saves — 316 of them with the An­gels from 1995 to 2004 — didn’t want to fi­nal­ize his de­ci­sion un­til he com­pleted a lengthy bullpen ses­sion at UC River­side on Thurs­day.

“He called me [Fri­day] morn­ing and said, ‘Let’s go,’ ” said Paul Co­hen, Per­ci­val’s agent. “I just fin­ished a 10year ma­trix for his re­tire­ment plan. That’s go­ing into the pa­per shred­der next week.”

Per­ci­val, who was serv­ing as an An­gels rov­ing pitch­ing in­struc­tor, will spend the next two weeks throw­ing and work­ing out while Co­hen be­gins can­vass­ing gen­eral man­agers to gauge in­ter­est and ar­rang­ing throw­ing ses­sions for scouts.

Closer Fran­cisco Ro­driguez and setup man Scot Shields are en­trenched at the back of the An­gels’ bullpen, but if Justin Speier, on the dis­abled list be­cause of an uniden­ti­fied con­di­tion un­re­lated to base­ball, re­mains out in­def­i­nitely, there is a chance Per­ci­val could re­turn to the An­gels.

Per­ci­val, who last pitched for the Detroit Tigers in 2005, is open to a variety of bullpen roles. With so many re­liev­ers on the dis­abled list and teams look­ing for bullpen help, Co­hen is con­fi­dent Per­ci­val, who saved three of the An­gels’ four World Se­ries wins in 2002, will land a job.

“He’s go­ing to look at each sit­u­a­tion on its own, whether it’s clos­ing, set­ting up, where the team is in the stand­ings,” Co­hen said. “He’s not mar­ried to clos­ing. He un­der­stands he’s been away from the game for a year and it’s in the mid­dle of the sea­son. But he loves base­ball, and if he’s 90%, he’s still bet­ter than most guys in most bullpens.”



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