ANAHEIM -- The A's have won five of six games against the Angels this year, have won the last three season series between the clubs and are 37-26 against them over the past four years.
Angels closer Ernesto Frieri predicted that trend is going to change in this week's three-game series at Angel Stadium.
"We're going to beat them," Frieri said Sunday. "Get ready to write that. I hate to say this, but they have a little bit extra luck. If you pay attention every play, it's stupid how the game goes their way."
The A's, coming off a weekend in Baltimore spent battling the Orioles and third baseman Manny Machado in a series of confrontations, hardly seemed to notice Frieri's remarks.
"Words are words," A's third baseman Josh Donaldson said. "They don't mean anything, until you put something behind them.
"To me, it just doesn't make a difference. Say what you want to."
A's manager Bob Melvin said of Frieri's remarks: "That's just the way he feels. That's fine. I don't think it affects us in any way."
On Monday, Frieri said: "I don't care. I'm not trying to cause any attention. I'll tell you again: We're going to beat them. I said that, honestly. But what I don't like is how you guys use it."
Over the weekend in Baltimore, benches twice cleared during incidents involving Machado, who on Friday took acception to how hard he was tagged out by Donaldson, and then was ejected Sunday after the bat released from his hands on a swing at a ball thrown at him by reliever Fernando Abad. Abad was also tossed.
A's split on Machado's apology
ANAHEIM -- A's catcher Derek Norris said he accepted the apology issued Monday by Orioles third baseman Manny Machado.
A's third baseman Josh Donaldson, however, did not.
"I knew, once he left the ballpark, once he looked back, it would kind of sink in," Norris said of Machado on Monday at Angel Stadium. "If you have any kind on cognitive response to anything, you'll feel remorse.
"It looks like he feels sorry for what he did. It looks like he just got a little carried away emotionally [Friday and Sunday]. That [the apology] is good enough for me."
The first confrontation between the A's and Machado came in Baltimore on Friday, when Donaldson tagged out Machado, who stumbled, fired his helmet to the ground, then went nose-to-nose with the A's third baseman. That led to the benches clearing. Donaldson was later hit by a Wei-Yin Chen pitch, after another missed.
On Sunday, Machado's backswing conked Norris on the head, knocking him out of the game. Norris said he was upset, only because Machado didn't show any contrition while he was being attended to behind the plate by the medical staff, a courtesy commonly offered when such an accident occurs. Later, when A's pitcher Fernando Abad buzzed Machado with a second consecutive pitch, Machado swung and his bat went flying toward third, clearing the benches again.
Donaldson was asked Monday if Machado's apology meant anything to him.
"Doesn't. Words are words. You have to go out there and prove something every day," he said. "It takes a long time in the game to develop a [good] reputation as a player, and a short time to lose it. The only thing to get that back is to go out there and play it the right way."
When asked about Machado's apology, A's manager Bob Melvin said: "Good for him. I would like for us to just put it behind us, and go out and play today."
Norris 'good to go' after passing concussion tests
ANAHEIM -- A's catcher Derek Norris, who passed concussion tests Sunday after a backswing from Orioles third baseman Manny Machado hit him on the head and prompted him to leave the game, said he's fine, physically.
"I'm good to go," he said. "I feel it's behind me today. On the field, I told our trainer I just needed a minute to cool, but he said they take these things seriously, so they took me out."
Norris was not in Monday's lineup for the series opener at Angel Stadium -- Stephen Vogt caught, with John Jaso DHing -- but that was for matchup reasons against Angels right-handed starter Garrett Richards.
Earl Bloom is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.