Last Sunday morning at around 12:30am Kotchman was given an early wake up call from his manager at Arkansas and told to pack your bags your going to the show right now. So Casey quickly gathered is belongings and made a quick stop at the stadium on the way to the airport to get his gear. He was told that Erstad had gone down with a hamsting injury the night before and that the Angels were calling him up to replace him.
It was interesting to hear Stoneman say that when Erstad gets back from injury that it is possible that Casey will stay at 1B for the Angels. With that statement, Casey must realize that his time has come and that as long as he lives up to the expectations that were put on him when he was drafted with the Angels #1 pick in the 2001 draft he will be maning first base for the next several years in Anaheim.
With just over 600 professional at bats in baseball, Casey has hit at every stop he has made in the Angels minor league system. If Casey's first two games for the Angels in New York are any indication of how he will play for the Angels, then the Angels have a rising first base star on their hands. Most scouts and team personnel will already tell you that Casey is the real deal.
Perhaps one day Angel Fans will be able to remember when the hall of fame career of Casey Kotchman began almost overnight when Erstad reinjured his hamstring in May of 2004. For now Angel Fans can sit back and just watch this young star play his game on the big league level. Sometimes Christmas does come early for baseball fans.