As if what happened to LA Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs back on July 1st in Texas wasn’t enough the Angels had another near-tragic moment in Houston this weekend.
Most everyone knows about the tragedy that struck the LA Angels baseball team on July 1st, 2019. I have had many people who are not Angel fans or even baseball fans tell me how sorry they are and how tragic it was for Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs to pass away earlier this season from choking on his own vomit due to mixing opioids and alcohol. I cannot imagine how Tyler’s family has to be feeling especially when they learned the nature of his death.
The Angels have since made a trip back to Arlington last month with no incidents. However, when the team travelled to Houston this past weekend another tragedy was narrowly averted. On Friday night during the beginning of the Angels radio broadcast former Angel pitcher and current analyst on the KLAA 830 radio broadcast Mark Langston collapsed in the broadcast booth shortly after the first pitch of the game that night.
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Medical personnel were summoned by the Astros officials immediately and thankfully arrived within two minutes of Langston’s collapse. There were able to shock his heart back into rhythm and transported Langston to a local hospital. He is said to be in good spirits and in stable condition as of Sunday evening.
Angels play-by-play announcer Terry Smith, who is Langston’s broadcast partner described the scene to Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register and other media giving a very scary account of the night’s events in regards to Langston.
“I can tell you this, in all certainty, they shocked him back to life,” Smith said. “If this happened in his hotel room, he would have died. And he knows it.”
Below is a picture of the two police officers who saved Mark Langston’s life.
If I was the Angels I would try to find a way to stay out of Texas for awhile after the latest incident, although the medical emergency was handled flawlessly by the Houston emergency crews. I know you can’t blame the state of Texas or cities of Arlington and Houston for what happened to Skaggs and Langston. It is just eerie that the team almost had two tragedies in the state within a few months of each other.
Thankfully for Langston and his family as well as the Angels organization disaster was averted by such a quick response by the two police officers pictured above and the other medical staff and doctors that attended to Langston throughout the evening. I would have hated to see another member of the Angels family, especially a good guy like Mark Langston, pass away.
I remember watching Langston pitch when I was growing up when he played for the Seattle Mariners. I had a memorable encounter with Langston before an Angel game when he signed an autograph for me. He was very kind and signed probably 50 autographs that night. What was even more special to me was that Langston signed his autograph with a bible verse below it as did now ESPN broadcaster Harold Reynolds.
It really had an effect on me that these ball players would openly profess their faith like this and I never forgot it. Years later I ran into him in the press dining room and said hello to him. I didn’t have time to tell him about the effect he had on me growing up when he signed my program with the Bible verse. I hope to encounter him again sometime in the future and thank him for that special moment.
Thanks in large part the efforts of Commander Follis and Commander Edwards of the Houston Police Department I may get to do so one day. I definitely believe it was divine intervention that saved Mark Langston and I glad his life was spared. I hope to see Mark Langston doing Angel broadcasts for many years to come. Thank God Mark Langston is alive and well.