Mike Trout noticed it right away during batting practice. The center-field wall in Angel Stadium, which was 400 feet away from home plate last season, is now 396 feet. The distance to straight-away left field, which was 365 feet last season, is 347 feet, and right field moved from 365 feet to 348 feet.
"At first, I thought, 'Why did they change it?'" the Angels center fielder said. "Then I thought that maybe they remeasured it in the off-season."
Neither is true. The dimensions of the outfield wall remain exactly the same as they were last season. But the location of several distance markers were moved laterally, to account for the placement of new advertising banners.
That gave some the impression the fences were moved in and caused confusion for fans who noticed the changes during Saturday night's exhibition game against the Dodgers.
"Nothing has changed," said Eric Kay, the team's director of communications. "The positioning of the numbers on the wall has moved — the ones in left and right field are tighter to the lines — and the placement is reflected in the actual distance in those spots. It's confusing, but it's just a change in angle."
Reliever Dane De La Rosa (forearm strain) threw an inning in minor league games in Arizona on Thursday and Sunday and will throw a simulated game Tuesday. Barring a setback, he could begin a rehabilitation assignment, probably with double-A Arkansas, by this weekend. He hopes to join the Angels by mid-April.
Left-hander Sean Burnett (sore elbow) has thrown three bullpen sessions in the last six days and hopes to face hitters in a simulated game Wednesday before reporting to extended spring-training camp in Arizona. There is no timetable for his return.
"It's frustrating, disappointing, to not be activated for opening day," the reliever said, "but it's going in the right direction."
Left-hander Brian Moran (sore elbow) continues to throw in Arizona but has not yet progressed to a mound.
Mike Scioscia is less of a man, and he couldn't be happier. Since Nov. 1, the Angels manager has lost 40 1/2 pounds, and he said he has "another 25 pounds to go."
His motivation? "My wife saying enough is enough," he said. "She wants me to be healthy."
Asked what diet he is following, Scioscia said, "It's not rocket science. A little exercise and common-sense eating. Controlling the eating is not easy, but I'm doing it."
Vladimir Guerrero, who won the 2004 American League most-valuable-player award while leading the Angels to the division title, signed a one-day minor league contract with the team so he could officially retire with the Angels.
The former right fielder threw out the ceremonial first pitch to 1979 American League MVP Don Baylor, the Angels' new hitting coach, before Monday night's season opener.
Twitter: @Mike DiGiovanna