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Covering the Angels and Analyzing the Team’s Past

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January 30, 2012

Baseball America Top 10 Angels Prospects

by @ 7:33 pm. Filed under 2012 Angels

1)  Mike Trout  OF
2)  Jean Segura  ss
3)  Garrett Richards  RHP
4)  Johnny Hellweg  RHP
5)  C.J. Cron  1b
6)  Kaleb Cowart  3b
7)  Taylor Lindsey  2b
8)  Daniel Tillman  RHP
9)  Ariel Pena  RHP
10)  Nick Maronde  LHP

January 28, 2012

Mike Trout Picked As Third Best Prospect by MLB.com

by @ 8:00 am. Filed under 2012 Angels

Mike Trout was picked as the number three prospect in all of baseball by MLB.com.  The guy can rake and after he dominated the Texas League, he was bumped all the way up to the big league’s where he struggled as a 20 year old.

Trout had 18 doubles, 13 triples and 11 home runs in the Texas League and that got him a .958 OPS.  Throw in 33 stolen bases and he had a very productive 2011 season.  He also has a nice eye at the plate and it’ll be fun seeing Trout roaming the outfield for the Angels for the next few years.

January 17, 2012

Angels Sign Erick Aybar to One Year Deal

by @ 6:50 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

The Angels inked Erick Aybar to a one year deal at $5.075 million and they’re still keeping their prospects open for a long term deal.  The shortstop had a nice season for the Angels in 2011 and he finished with a career high 10 home runs and 30 stolen bases.  He also got his strikeouts down and won his first gold glove.

Aybar has been the starting shortstop for the past three seasons and so far, 2009 has probably been his best season but 2011 was a close second.  It’ll be interesting if they can get a longer term deal done because the Angels have a lot of money tied up already.  Still, they seem committed to win and having an Aybar/Kendricks infield looks like who they’re interested in.

December 22, 2011

Los Angeles Angels Top 20 Prospects

by @ 3:31 pm. Filed under 2012 Angels

John Sickels put out his Angels top 20 prospect list and there’s some decent talent at the top but it thins out pretty quick.  Of course topping the list is the best prospect on any team, Mike Trout.  Trout made it to the majors at a very young age and showed what he can do so the sky is the limit on this guy.  Hopefully he’ll be roaming the outfield and hitting with Albert Pujols for years to come.

Garrett Richards is second and he was given a B+.  Even Sickels said that grade may be optimistic but this is a guy who could be solid back of the rotation guy.  Jean Segura is third and he’s the last of the B’s.  The Angels have to decide whether he’ll be a shortstop or second baseman although with Howie Kendrick in the fold, he’s blocked there.  Rounding out the top five are Taylor Lindsey (2b, B-) and Kaleb Cowart (3b, B-).

December 8, 2011

Angels Sign Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson

by @ 8:26 pm. Filed under 2012 Angels

What a great day for Angels fans.  The team locked up Albert Pujols for ten years at around $260 million and then they turn around and pick up C.J. Wilson to a five year, $77.5 million deal.    So the Angels now have the best hitter in baseball and probably the top free agent pitcher to go along with Jered Weaver who’s probably the second best pitcher in the American League.

That is a lot of money though.  They’re still on the hook for Vernon Wells but this is what you can do if you have an owner with deep pockets.  The Angels were right there in the final week and now they probably have a better team then the Rangers do for the time being.

This does give the Angels one to many first baseman though although I guess having too many sluggers is a luxury that a lot of teams don’t have.  I’m really looking forward to this 2012 season.

December 6, 2011

Angels In the Mix for C.J. Wilson

by @ 7:13 am. Filed under 2012 Angels

C.J Wilson is one of the pitching prizes out there and it looks like the Angels are now going after him hard.  The Angels have some strength in the rotation and this signing should just make them better. Of course the Angels haven’t had much luck recently with long term deals so the big thing will be how much we give him.

One problem though is, the Angels already have an ace.  They’re paying Jered Weaver $85 million over five years and they’ve even said they’d be hesitant to pay Wilson more then that.  Supposedly there’s a six year deal on the table so that limitation may essentially cause the Angels to lose this prize.  It looks like they’re competing against the Nationals, Red Sox, Marlins and Rangers.

November 30, 2011

Angels Trade Tyler Chatwood to Rockies for Chris Ianetta

by @ 8:25 pm. Filed under 2012 Angels

The Angels pulled off a trade prior to the Winter Meetings when they traded pitcher Tyler Chatwood to the Rockies for catcher Chris Ianetta.  A one time Rockies top prospect, Ianetta has floundered with the Rockies.  One thing he’s good at is drawing a walk though and Ianetta will give the Angels a solid plate setter at a position they needed an upgrade at.

Chatwood was the team’s top pick back in 2008, is a blue chip prospect and he’s still young.  Still, the Angels do have some arms and they felt the need to bring in a catcher that has some pop.  Still, getting a guy like Ianetta away from Coors Field could have some interesting consequences.  Control has been an issue for Chatwood so maybe that made the decision easier.  Still, this is a guy who probably would have pitched in the rotation this season.

The Angels have to make some moves to compete next year.  The Rangers will be there and you wonder how Angels tickets sales are going to be if they keep coming in second place.

November 14, 2011

Mark Trumbo Finishes Second In ROY

by @ 8:25 pm. Filed under 2012 Angels

Mark Trumbo had a solid season in his rookie campaign and this showed up in the ROY of the voting where he finished second place.  He was named on 21 of the 28 ballots and he picked up five first place votes, eleven second place votes and five third place votes.  Jeremy Hellickson won the award but the first place votes were all over the place.  Eric Hosmer, who came in third place, finished with four first place votes while Ivan Nova and Dustin Ackley both picked up one.

Trumbo wasn’t the only Angel who picked up some points.   Jordan Walden received a single third place vote for his contribution to the team.  That makes for two solid building blocks heading into 2012.

October 14, 2011

Offense a Priority for Angels in 2012

by @ 5:21 pm. Filed under 2011 Angels

The Angels finished near the bottom in runs scored in 2011.  Some of that may be attributable to their ballpark which seemed to be a pitcher’s haven last year.  Another problem is, while they were in the middle in batting average, they were closer to the bottom in OBP so drawing walks was a problem.  No Angel drove in 100 or scored a hundred and none of their regulars hit .300.

Howie Kendrick was the team leader in OPS+.  He hit .285 with an .802 OPS and he found some pop with eighteen home runs.  He also led the team with 86 runs.  Mark Trumbo led the team with 29 home runs but he hit just .254 with 25 walks.  Even more extreme then Trumbo was Vernon Wells who hit 25 home runs and he hit just .218.

Helps is on the way so it’s time to buy your Angels tickets because this could be the year.  Peter Bourjos had a solid season in his first full big league season and Trumbo was a rookie so you’d expect him to get better.  And then of course there’s Mike Trout who ended up in 40 games.  He hit just .220 but he showed some early pop and it’ll be fun watching this guy get better.

 

September 26, 2011

Angels Eliminated From Playoff

by @ 11:12 pm. Filed under 2011 Angels

It was a long shot to begin with but the Rangers of all teams eliminated the Angels from playoff contention.  With the collapse of the Red Sox, the Angels actually had a shot at the Wild Card but no longer because they fell to the Rangers tonight.

Dan Haren was good but not good enough and he fell to 16-10.  He gave up four runs (three earned) on nine hits and one walk with eight strikeouts in eight innings.  Rich Thompson got into trouble in the ninth but he pitched out of it and didn’t allow a run.

Erik Aybar went two for three with a run.  Mike Trout went one for three with an RBI and a walk.

The loss puts the Angels at 86-74 on the season.  That’s eight back of the Rangers in a season where the Angels should have done better.

August 20, 2011

Angels Falling Fast

by @ 5:01 am. Filed under 2011 Angels

Well, the Angels were in the mix then an extended losing streak and a hot patch by the Rangers and the Angels are now six games back.  And that’s even after taking two straight.  That four game series against the Rangers was the killer and while the Angels managed to win the finale, it didn’t make for the other three losses.  There’s still some time, but it doesn’t look like baseball playoff tickets are in Angels’ fans futures.

Last night, the Angels took care of the Orioles 8-3.  Torii Hunter had a big day at the plate with a pair of home runs and five RBIs.  Peter Bourjos also had a nice game and he went three for five with a solo home run.

Dan Haren picked up the win.  He gave up three runs on nine hits with eight strikeouts in seven frames.  Scott Downs and Fernando Rodney pitched a shutout inning a piece to close out the game.

Joel Pineiro gets the start tonight and Tommy Hunter throws for the Orioles.  The Rangers continue their series against the White Sox.  Last night was tough because the White Sox led 3-0 but ended up losing 7-4.

July 31, 2011

Jered Weaver Tossed in Loss to Tigers

by @ 3:14 pm. Filed under 2011 Angels

The Angels had to settle for a split after a loss to the Tigers today.  This was one of the best pitching matchups I’ve seen in a while with Jered Weaver going up against Justin Verlander.  Weaver was tagged for a two run home run in the third and then in the seventh, things got weird.  Carlos Guillen hit a solo shot and words were exchanged.  The ump gave a warning but Weaver must have missed it because he went to Alex Avila’s head.  Weaver was immediately tossed out.

The final was 3-2 which wasn’t bad because we didn’t get a hit until the eighth inning.  Izturis had the lone base hit in the game with an RBI single.  Both of the runs the Angels scored were unearned.

The Rangers lost so the Angels are still two back.  The team gets a day off before the Twins come to town.  This is going to be a fun race. I wonder what Angels tickets are going for these days with them in the middle of this division race.

June 27, 2011

Angels a Disappointment, Yet Still In It

by @ 6:56 am. Filed under 2011 Angels

If you would have asked me what I’d think of a .500 record at the half way point for the Angels, I would have been pretty disappointed.  We’re still a couple of games away from the 81 game mark but at best, the Angels will be a game above .500.  The good news is, no one else in the division has broken out either and while the Angels sit in third place, they’re only two games back of the first place Rangers.  Attendance is also doing well as usual and it’s always nice to see all of those Angels tickets being sold.

Jared Weaver had another masterful start but he got a no decision and the Angels lost the game yesterday.  Weaver was 3-0 in June with his second complete game shutout and he’s looking like a Cy Young contender.  April is still his best month but June’s 1.67 ERA is nothing to shake a stick at either.

Weaver gave up one run in seven inning yesterday.  Jordan Walden gave up two runs in the ninth and the Angels lost 3-2.   It also didn’t hurt that they ran into a hot Clayton Kershaw, who gave up only two runs.  Vernon Wells hit his ninth home run but he’s still hitting only .205.  He also struck out three times.  No Angel reached base more then once and six hits isn’t going to usually cut it.  The fact that Weaver kept them in the game despite the lack of offense shows how good this guy is throwing.

Next up are the Nationals at home.  Ervin Santana gets the nod tonight and John Lannen throws for the Nationals.

May 26, 2011

Angels Knocking on the Rangers Door

by @ 5:15 pm. Filed under 2011 Angels

The past couple of weeks, nobody in the AL West has made a move except for the Mariners and while there are still some tight divisions, none of them has just a 2 1/2 game seperation between first and last place.  The Angels sit at 26-26 and that’s good for second place, just one game back of the Rangers.  The loss to the A’s this afternoon didn’t help.  Oddly, the Angels are exactly .500 at both home and on the road.

Howie Kendrick just hit the disabled list and that’s going to hurt because he was finally looking like the batting title contendor that a lot of people thought he’d be.  Torii Hunter is only hitting .240 but he’s managed to be productive.  Erick Aybar is off to a nice start this season too and he’s seeing more time.

Pitching is what this team is about.  Jered Weaver and Dan Haren are both going to be Cy Young contenders and Ervin Santana has been solid as well.  Weaver has cooled off a bit after that hot start and while he’s lost four straight, he’s hardly been awful.  But these three guys are a big reason the Angels have the second best ERA in the American League.

Next up for the Angels are a struggling Twins team.  Hopefully they continue to struggle and the Angels can come out of that series with a few wins.

April 27, 2011

Angels Take Two of Three Against A’s

by @ 7:34 pm. Filed under 2011 Angels

The good news is, the first place Rangers have cooled down.  The bad news is, the Angels haven’t been able to take full advantage of it and they sit a game back (two in the loss column) after a series win against the A’s.  The got some good pitching in the opener, some decent offense in the second game and then in the final they laid an egg at the plate and lost 2-1 in ten innings.

Jered Weaver has been the talk of the town.  He’s now 6-0 with a 0.99 ERA and he’s had back to back complete games.  Throw in 49 strikeouts (including 15 in a game against Toronto) and you have the early front runner for the Cy Young.  Lost in all of the Weaver mania has been a fantastic start by Dan Haren.  He’s 4-1 with a 1.46 ERA and you can’t complain about his 33-5 strikeout to walk ration.

One problem has been, the offense has only been okay.  Torii Hunter leads the team with only twelve RBIs and of all people, Howie Kendrick leads the team with seven home runs.  Kendrick has been the best hitter but when he’s on top of your home run list, you something weird is going on.

Next up are the Rays.  The three game series starts Friday.  I’m going to be picking up Angels tickets for a few games coming up.  I wonder how tough of a buy these will be if the Angels are still in first place come August.

March 21, 2011

Angels and Rockies Tie

by @ 8:38 am. Filed under 2011 Angels

After a rough start by Matt Palmer, the Angels were able to salvage a tie with the Colorado Rockies in their spring game yesterday.  The Rockies scored four in the first then two more in the third as Palmer was taken to task.  The pen came through big though.  Hisanori Takahashi threw two shutout innings and four other relievers threw a shutout game a piece to hold the Rockies in check through the final six innings of the game.

Torii Hunter went three for four with a solo home run.  Vernon Wells also had a nice game and he went two for four with two runs and an RBI.  The rest of the team managed just a combined five runs.

Next up are the Cubs.  Game time is 1:05 and Jered Weaver gets the start.

February 27, 2011

One Day at an Time

by @ 9:38 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

Spring training as started for the LA Angels and has come with mixed results as the team started 1-1. The first victory came courtesy of the Florida State University baseball team in which the team beat 8-0, with the win going to pitcher Drew Naylor. The team wasn’t as lucky when they faced there first Major League team the New York Yankees which handed them a 7-3 loss. Yankees Center fielder Curtis Granderson ht a two run homer in the fourth inning to blow the game wide open. Hopefully the Angels can rebound with a Monday game against the Toronto Blue Jays

February 20, 2011

UNtimely Healing

by @ 1:22 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

The Angles have received not so good news at the start of Spring Training as First Baseman Kendra Morales broken leg is not healing as suspected. The big bat of the Cuban slugger which produced 34 home runs and a .569 slugging percentage and a fifth place finish in the AL MVP voting. Missing a cleanup hitter can be detrimental to a lineups production so manager Mike Scocia is entertaining the possibility of him DH at the start of the season and slowly   work his way into the infield. If all goes well and Morales can improve the Angels hope that he can step into the superstar category  of Major Leaugue players during the 2011 season.

February 15, 2011

Angelic Healing ?

by @ 10:48 am. Filed under Uncategorized

The LA Angeles have two goals entering  spring training as do most ball clubs which is to become better and get healthy, but for the Angels this is vital to their offense as Kendray Morales and Eric Aybar battle nagging injuries. These two players seem to be most important to the success of the ball club as when the go down so do the offensive and defensive production of the entire team follows suit. Aybar is especially important to the infield as he continues to attempt to fill the shoes of former Mr. Everything Chone Figgins.  Also infielder Marcel Izturis who will most likely serve as the clubs leadoff man who they hope can stay clear from the DL and ignite the offense.

January 22, 2011

Angels Pick Up Vernon Wells From Blue Jays

by @ 8:27 am. Filed under 2011 Angels

The Angels struck out in the free agent signing season but they eventually got a big bat they wanted, sort of.  They traded Juan Rivera and Mike Napoli to the Jays for All Star Vernon Wells.  Vernon had a come back season last year and he belted 31 home runs while posting his best ERA+ (127) since 2006.

The downside is, Wells is set to make a ton of money beginning this year.  He can opt out of his contract after 2011 although I find that doubtful because he’s set to make $86 million over the next four years.  This is an interesting, high risk move so it’ll be interesting to see if it pans out.  Wells had a few mediocre seasons between 2006 and 2010 so he has been prone to under perform.

January 9, 2011

Angels Top Eleven Prospects

by @ 4:59 pm. Filed under 2011 Angels

The Angels missed out on Adrian Beltre but they can’t be too sad because they’re some top notch talent on the way in the next few years.  Kevin Goldstein put out his top eleven Angels prospect list and the Angels have two five stars and three four stars at the top of the list.  Coming in at number one was Mike Trout, the Angels first round pick in 2009.  This outfielder can rake and while he’s still probably over a year away, he’s moving up the ladder quickly.

Number two is second baseman Jean Segura.  Also a couple of years away, this guy can also rake and Goldstein talks about how the Angels relish the idea of Seguara and Archer hitting at the top of the Angels lineup in the future.

Jordan Walden is third and he’s the top pitching prospect.  He’s major league ready and got some time with the Angels in 2010.  He’s been deemed the closer of the future but this year he’ll probably round out a solid pen.  Hank Conger (catcher, major league ready) and Kaleb Cowart (Angels first round pick in 2010) round out the top five.

Overall, Goldstein says the Angels are a top ten system.  He seems really high on Trout so he bears keeping an eye on.

December 22, 2010

Beltre Still In Sight

by @ 7:49 pm. Filed under 2011 Angels

With money to spend, the Angels have been the odd man out.  They’ve missed out on most of the big names and the lone player left in their sites is Adrian Beltre.  Of course you don’t have to go too far back to remember another AL West team (yes, the Mariners) that signed Beltre to a big deal only to have it blow up in their face.  Still, the third baseman is looking for big money, and he’s the biggest name left out there.

It looks like the Rangers are the only other team in the mix, but it looks like they’re not willing to come close to what the Angels are offering.  The Rangers have gotten burned by Boras before by having them basically bid against themselves for Alex Rodriguez way back when and the Angels appear to be trying to avoid that as well.

Still, the Angels need some help and Beltre, at least the 2010 form, could be a huge boon. We’ll see if they get the deal sooner rather then later.

December 31, 2008

Angels Sign Brian Fuentes to Replace Francisco Rodriguez

by @ 5:29 am. Filed under Catchers Gear

Just one year removed from Francisco Rodriguez’s historic season, the Angels have signed former Rockies closer Brian Fuentes to take his place after K-Rod signed with the Mets.  Fuentes got a three year, $30 million deal, which high but less then the three year, $37 million deal that K-Rod got.  Of course if your a stat head, you know K-Rod’s season was a bit overrated.  Yes, he racked up the saves, but he was probably the fourth or fifth best closer in the American League, much less in baseball.  With Fuentes, we get someone who has just as good of an arm at a better price.  The only concern was Fuentes’ 2007 meltdown when he lost the closer job midseason.

The Sorcerer Apprentice online download

Mike Scioscia is now in the fold until 2019.  This was an interesting move because despite being semi-favorites the past two years, the Angels haven’t been able to get it done in the playoffs.  That’s a long time to commit to one guy.

My son is a little league catcher so I picked up some catchers gear for him for Christmas.  I found a great selection of catchers equipment at Baseball Rampage.  Even talked to someone on the phone, and these guys know what they’re talking about.  I also liked their selection of bats and gloves.  Too bad I live so far away, because I could see hanging out at this place on a regular basis.

October 5, 2008

Angels Live Another Day

by @ 10:31 pm. Filed under 2008 Angels, Angels Season Lookbacks

The Angels and Red Sox were even at 4′s and took the game into the 12th before Erick Aybar drove in the go-ahead run to give the Angels another shot at a series comeback.

The Angels loaded the bases off Josh Beckett in the first, but could only score one run on Juan Rivera’s walk. The Sox took the lead with three in the second before Mike Napoli blasted his first homerun of the night, a two-run shot above the Green Monster to tie the game. He then drove a solo homerun in the fifth for the go-ahead run. Boston evened it up in the bottom half, and the Angels were shut out until the 12th when Napoli got a leadoff single and came around to score on Aybar’s single, his first hit of the ALDS.

Joe Saunders didn’t make it out of the fifth inning and was tagged for four runs on five hits, including a three-run Boston rally in the second. Arrendondo, Oliver, Shields, and K-Rod then held the Red Sox scoreless until Weaver tossed the last two innings, getting the win as a reliever.

Game 4 is set for Monday night, and the Angels look to become the fifth team to rally back and win the series after being in an 0-2 hole. John Lackey and Jon Lester will face off, a rematch of Game 1 in which Lester came out on top after giving up no earned runs through seven.

Angels One Loss Away from Season’s End

by @ 2:07 pm. Filed under 2008 Angels, Angels Season Lookbacks

The Angels came back to tie it up after the Red Sox had an early 4-0 lead, but K-Rod gave up two in the ninth to put the Angels in an 0-2 hole for the series.

Boston scored four in the first, but the Angels rallied back throughout the game to tie it a 5′s by the eighth. Hunter got an RBI-single in the first but Juan Rivera grounded out with runners on second and third to end the inning. Figgins got an RBI-single in the fourth before another by Hunter in the fifth. Mike Napoli walked with bases loaded in the seventh to bring the Angels within one, but Aybar struck out with bases loaded to keep the Angels down a run. Mark Teixeira drove in Chone Figgins, who led off with a triple, on a sac fly to tie it in the eighth but Jonathan Papelbon shut down the Angels in the ninth to end the game.

It was the first inning that hurt Santana, giving Boston a quick 4-0 lead, including a three-run homerun to Jason Bay. He gave up another run in the fourth before leaving in the sixth, being down two runs. Arrendondo and Shields held the Sox offense while the Angels tied it up, and K-Rod came in for the ninth hold the tie. He gave up a leadoff double to David Ortiz and one out later gave up the go-ahead two-run homerun to JD Drew.

The Angels now have nine consecutive postseason losses, and 11 consecutive postseason losses to the Red Sox. Joe Saunders will look to help the Angels avoid the feat they suffered last year, with a sweep from Boston. Saunders is a perfect 4-0 with a 2.75 ERA in six career starts against the Sox, with the Angels winning all six of those games. Three of those four wins have come at Fenway, but he will have to face Josh Beckett to continue his undefeated streak. Beckett went 12-10 this year, with two of those losses courtesy of the Angels.

October 2, 2008

Angel Offense Falls Short in Game 1

by @ 9:14 am. Filed under 2008 Angels, Angels Season Lookbacks

The offense could only rally for one run as Jason Bay’s two-run homerun in the sixth off Lackey put the Red Sox ahead for good.

The Angels managed six hits off Jon Lester’s seven innings, but only scored one, in the third off Torii Hunter’s RBI single. They also failed to get runs on other opportunities, like loading the bases in the first and having two back-to-back one-out singles in the eighth, but Vlad ran through the stop sign and was thrown out. 

Lackey tossed five shutout innings before giving up Jason Bay’s first career postseason homerun, a two-out, two-run go-ahead shot in the sixth. Lackey was lifted in the seventh and is still winless in his last five postseason starts. Oliver and Shields came in to relieve, with Shields running into trouble in the ninth, giving up two RBI-singles to make it 4-1.

The Angels will try and forget that this is their eighth consecutive postseason loss, their fifth at home. Ervin Santana has the chance to even up the series in Game 2 on Friday. His battery mate will be Mathis, and those two had a 14-4 record with a 2.88 ERA while starting together this season. Santana is 1-2 lifetime against the Sox, but did not face them this year. He will face Dice-K, who had a 9-0 road record this season, and had a 2-1 record in four postseason starts last year.

September 30, 2008

ALDS Game 1 Preview

by @ 10:11 pm. Filed under Angels Season Lookbacks

The White Sox completed the final piece of the playoff puzzle today, but the Angels already have their match set in hosting .

The Angels, facing the Sox for the third time in postseason history, have a chance to get back at the Red Sox for sweeping them out of the postseason last year in the ALDS. John Lackey will make the start in Game 1 and will face lefty Jon Lester. Despite Lackey’s worst outing of the season in his last start, he ended up with a 12-5 record, including two wins against the Red Sox. Lackey also started in last year’s ALDS Game 1, but took a 4-0 loss to set the pace for the sweep. Lester went 16-6 with a 3.21 ERA this year, including a four-run, nine-hit start against the Angels back in April.

September 28, 2008

Angels Hit 100 Wins with Sunday’s Shut Out Over Rangers

by @ 9:19 pm. Filed under 2008 Angels, Angels Season Lookbacks

After dropping the first two games to the Rangers, Joe Saunders and the Angels them out on Sunday to get their 100th and final regular season win.

John Lackey was roughed up on Friday night, being tagged for a career-high 10 runs on 12 hits before being pulled in the third. The Rangers rallied for all 12 runs in the first four frames, including a seven-run second inning. The offense was held to just five hits and one run, an RBI-single by Vlad in the first. The tough loss was followed by news that the Angels clinched home field advantage for the entire playoffs, with the Rays losing that night.

The offense fared a little better on Saturday, touching home four times on nine hits, but Ervin Santana struggled, giving up eight runs on ten hits. Mark Teixeira knocked in a run with a sac fly in the first before the Rangers took the lead with three runs in the second off two homeruns. The Angels were then shut out until the sixth when Reggie Willits scored on Morales’ RBI-groundout. They had another chance with the bases loaded in the seventh, but could only manage to score one run, on Matthew Brown’s RBI-single. Bobby Wilson then drove a run in in the ninth for his first career RBI. Santana was lifted with two outs in the sixth to keep his win total at 16 for the year.

The Angels finished off the 2008 regular season with a 7-0 shutout on Sunday, and now have two days off before hosting the Red Sox for the ALDS on Wednesday. Joe Saunders picked up his 17th win after tossing six shutout innings, holding the Rangers to two hits with nine K’s. The offense knocked in seven runs on twelve hits, with Napoli leading with 3 hits and 4 RBI. He drove an RBI-double in the second before hitting a solo homerun in the fifth. The Angels then rallied for three runs in the sixth, with an RBI-single by Matthews Jr. before Napoli drove a two-run double. The then added two more in the eighth, with Morales getting a walk with the bases loaded to cap off the scoring.

The opening game of the playoffs will be a matchup of John Lackey and Jon Lester on Wednesday.

September 26, 2008

Last Road Game is Win No. 99 for Angels

by @ 9:49 am. Filed under 2008 Angels, Angels Season Lookbacks

The Angels took the last game of the series with two ninth-inning go-ahead runs to get the series victory.

Vlad led the offense, going 2 for 4 with 3 runs and 3 RBI with both hits being homers. The Angels trailed for the first five frames, scoring a run in the second before taking the lead with two runs in the sixth. Vlad hit a solo shot that inning before driving a two-run homerun in the ninth to put the Angels ahead.

Dustin Moseley gave up two runs on six hits in his five innings, but didn’t factor into the decision. Jepsen gave up a run before Jose Arrendondo gave up a two-run homerun in the seventh, but still earned the win. After Vlad’s go-ahead homerun, Shields closed out the ninth to pick up his fourth save.

John Lackey will make the start in the opening game of the regular season’s last series. He looks to pick up his 13th win, and is 1-1 in three starts against the Rangers this season. Vincente Padilla will make the start for the Rangers, who is also 1-1 against the Angels this season, but has seen just three wins since the All-Star break.

September 25, 2008

Teixeira’s Eighth-Inning Blast Gives Angels Win Over Mariners

by @ 8:59 am. Filed under 2008 Angels, Angels Season Lookbacks

The Angels have now taken two of three from the Mariners with a 6-5 win on Wednesday. Their magic number to clinch home field advantage throughout the series is now three, and they are two wins away from the triple-digit mark.

After the Mariners scored one in the first, the Angels scored two in the second to take the lead on Aybar’s RBI-single and Aybar scoring on a passed ball. The Mariners took the lead in the fifth with three runs, but the Angels answered back with their of their own in the sixth to tie it. Sean Rodriquez drove a two-run double and came around to score on Anderson’s RBI-groundout. Teixeira then gave the Angels the go-ahead run with a solo shot in the eighth, his fourth hit of the game, a season-high. The Angels also got a taste of the new instant replay, reviewing Vlad’s foul-ball in the fifth that was close to being a homer so they reviewed it.

Jon Garland struggled to control the Mariners, giving up five runs on 11 hits through five innings. Darren Oliver then came in to toss two hitless innings to pick up his seventh win before Shields held the eighth and K-Rod picked up his 62nd save in the ninth.

The Angels can get the series win with a victory in today’s finale, their last road game of the season. Dustin Moseley will make the start for his last outing this season as a starter. Moseley is 1-1 with a 2.93 ERA lifetime against the Mariners. He will face lefty Cesar Jimenez, who is replacing Carlos Silva who will miss the start due to back soreness. Lucky for the Angels, Jimenez has only made one start this season, going three innings, and he will likely not go more than that, especially if the Angels hit him early.

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