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November 2, 2006

Los Angeles Angels Season Look Backs – 1962

by @ 9:17 am. Filed under Angels Season Lookbacks

Record – 86-76, Finished Third Place in the American League
Pythagorean Record – 82-80

Starters

Hitters (BA/OBP/SLG)

C - Buck Rodgers (.258/.309/.372)
1b - Lee Thomas (.290/.355/.467)
2b - Billy Moran (.282/.324/.407)
3b - Felix Torres (.259/.306/.392)
SS – Joe Koppe (.227/.352/.301)
LF – Leon Wagner (.268/.326/.500)
CF - Albie Pearson (.261/.360/.352)
RF - George Thomas (.238/.320/.381)

Team Leaders

Homeruns – Leon Wagner (37)
Batting Average - Lee Thomas (.290)
OPS - Leon Wagner (.826)
Best Fielder - Billy Moran (18 Fielding Runs Above Average)

Pitchers (IP/W/ERA)

SP – Ken McBride (149.3/11/3.50)
SP – Eli Grba (176.3/8/4.54)
SP – Ted Bowsfield (139/9/4.40)
SP - Bo Belinsky (187.3/10/3.56)
SP – Don Lee (149.3/8/3.11)
SP – Dean Chance (206.7/14/2.96)
CL – Tom Morgan (58.7/5/2.91)

Team Leaders

Wins – Dean Chance (14)
ERA – Dean Chance (2.96)
Strikeouts – Bo Belinsky (145)
Saves – Tom Morgan (9)

The 1962 Angels won 16 more games then there 1961 counterparts and in only the second season of the frachchise, they had topped the .500 mark.  They finished in third place in the American League, ten games behind the first place New York Yankees and five games behind the second place Minnesota Twins.

The teams hitting was pretty mediocre.  The Angels finished in the second division in just about every offensive category and they were eighth in the league with a .380 slugging percentage.  The leaders on offense were Leon Wagner and Lee Thomas.  Wagner set a franchise record with 37 homeruns and 107 RBIs. The 37 homeruns put him at third in the American League and he was fifth in the league in RBIs.  He finished fourth in the MVP voting and even won the MVP of the All Star Game.  He finished three for four with a homerun, two RBIs and a run.

Lee Thomas was right behind Wagner.  He led the team in hitting (.290) and hit 26 homeruns with 104 RBIs.  Centerfielder Albie Pearson also had a solid 1962 campaign.  His 115 runs led the American League and the former rookie of the year walked 95 times.

Rookie Dean Chance was the teams leader on the mound.  He led the team in innings pitched (206.7), wins (14), ERA (2.96) and he was even second in saves with eight.  His 2.96 ERA was good for fourth in the American League and he was the only Angel to throw 200 innings. 

The Angels peaked on July 21, 1962.  After a five game winning streak, the Angels stood at 53-40 and were in second place, 3 1/2 games behind the first place Yankees.  They made one final push and on August 8, 1962, the team had finished a four game winning streak and they were 4 1/2 games back of the Yankees but after that, the Angels went 22-27 to finish the season and dropped into third place.

Things definitely appeared to be on the upswing for the Angels after this solid 1962 season.  Unfortunately, there were some holes that might explain why this team never got over the hump.  They outplayed their Pythagorean Win/Loss by four games and while their team ERA was second in the American League, they were sixth in runs against so their pitching staff looked better then it really was.

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