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Stretch run for the Halos, but do they have the legs?

Posted By Bill Mahoney On Jul 13 2011 @ 7:37 pm In LA Angels Of Anaheim | No Comments

What an All-Star game. Pretty boring from start to finish. I remember the day when the starting pitcher went 2, and sometimes 3 innings. If you were out getting beer, or BBQing dogs, you might have missed Jered Weaver’s 14 pitch 1st inning. By throwing so few pitches, he’ll still have to throw some more on the side before his next start just to get his work in and stay on routine.

Jordan Walden threw 6 more pitches than Weaver and looked a lot shakier, as well. He did make a nice barehanded play to get Starlin Castro at the plate, but proceded to give up an RBI single to Andre Ethier. At least he got to say he pitched in an ASG. He shouldn’t have been there in the first place, but the more Halos, the better.

Howard Kendrick got an incomplete. In his only AB, he bounced out with the tying runs on base. I say incomplete because I won’t judge on one at bat, unless it is as a pinch hitter.

Enough with the game. All it means is the Angels will have to start the World Series on the road. I can dream, can’t I?

1st half Angel team awards:

MVP: Howard Kendrick. Not just for his bat, but for being a true team player. He plays any position asked of him and never complains. Weaver also gets full consideration for this award, but he wins the…

Cy Young: Fernando Rodney….hahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. You needed a laugh, didn’t you? Jered Weaver is the man.

Most Disappointing: Fernando Rodney sucks but Vernon Wells gets this award. A month and a half does not a season make. From what I have been told, the Major League season begins in April. Someone tell Wells that.

Rookie of the year: Come on now, Mark Trumbo. The Angels have to be ecstatic about his play - and his future. I know I am.

Most Forgotten: Dan Haren. His stats rivals Weaver’s, but he is sort of the lost guy in the rortation. That should change

Unsung hero: Erick Aybar. Key hits, a long hitting streak and fine fielding at a key position. You know when your shortstop is good? When you don’t talk much about him.

Gold Glove: Right now, Bourjos is as good as any center fielder in the game. When a 9 time gold glover changes positions, you know that Bourjos has to be someone special.

But all is not well in Disneyland. There are a number of weak spots.

Catcher: Jeff Mathis is fine defensively, and Mr. Conger can do some damage offensively. On the flip side, Mathis is inept with the bat, while Conger appears to call a good game, but may never throw another guy out. Pick your poison here and live with the results.

Bullpen: Bobby Cassevah and Michael Kohn are fine …one out of every 5 outings. Counting on them in a pennant race is risky, if not downright foolish. Rich Thompson needs to find consistency. If he walks the first guy he sees, please Scioscia, take him out. And if not Scott Downs, tell me one guy you trust to get the ball to Walden? Hello Heath Bell?

3rd base: Think how dangerous the Angels would be if they had David Wright (healthy) playing the hot corner and plugging in Alberto Callaspo where ever he is needed in a utility role…

Bench: When Russell Branyan is your main guy off the bench, you are in serious trouble. And if the Angels suffer an injury or two, watch out, they could become sellers on the open market real quick.

DH: Love Bobby Abreu, but his power days are behind him. He still works counts better that any hitter the Halos have, but I am concerned about the decrease in bat speed as the season progresses. This will not improve.

Mike Trout: Through 3 games Trout has been as good as advertised. But when Bourjos plays, where do you put Trout? I guess the Angels will send him back down, unless they fall out of the race.

$$$$: Do the Angels have the resources to go out and get a guy or two. One repot says they don’t, while the Halos’ Brass says they do. We’ll see.

I am sold on the Halo rotation, and the positions I didn’t mention above.

Look for Wells and Aybar to have strong 2nd halves. I think Haren will stay about the same, but I think Weaver will take a step back. Ervin Santana and Joel Pineiro will flirt with the .500 mark. Tyler Chatwood, I think, will tire as the season progresses and the pressure mounts.

The Angels enter the 2nd half having won 8 straight series and 19 of 25 -  including 4 straight.

Angels have 70 games remaining

Rangers: 13 games H (10) R (3)
Mariners: 10 games H (6) R (4)
Athletics:10 games H (3) R (7)
Twins: 6 games H (6) R (0)
White Sox: 2 games H (2) R (0)
Indians: 3 games H (0) R (3)
Tigers: 4 games H (0) R (4)
Yankees: 6 games H (3) R (3)
Orioles: 9 games H (3) R (6)
Blue Jays: 7 games H (0) R (7)

TOTAL 70 GAMES H (33) R (37)

44 of their final 70 games are against teams that right now are under .500. so this schedule plays out on their favor.

The Angels will finish 85-77, 6 games back of the Rangers, who I think will make a big deal in July or August.

But one thing you can count on is that I am always wrong.

Go Angels!!

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