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To make the playoffs, the Angels will have to WALK a tightrope.

Posted By Bill Mahoney On Sep 22 2011 @ 11:27 pm In LA Angels Of Anaheim | No Comments

Thank you Major League baseball for making the Angels play a night game in Toronto on Thursday. Flying back across country so they can start a huge series against the Oakland A’s on Friday, is a true recipe for success. Maybe the schedule was made with the thought the Angels would stink in 2011, I don’t know.

I had the Angels losing 3 of 4 to the Jays. They split, but both their losses came in extra innings. Not bad.

While I have been involved in a number of car wrecks, I have never been hit with a baseball flying at over 100mph. I would be scared witless. I truly thought the ball that ricocheted off Dan Haren’s arm on Wednesday ended his season. You could hear the ball on skin sound through the TV. Haren’s reaction confirmed my unmedical diagnosis. I was surprised, and happy to find out that he is fine, and won’t miss a start. I remember a few years back seeing Padre pitcher Bryce Florie take one off his face. I thought he was gonna die. Watching Haren get hit brought that memory back.

Vernon Wells was a man possessed on Wednesday, smacking 2 home runs as the Angels won 7-2. The fans are now booing one of their former favorites. I don’t understood, why are you guys booing him? He played hard in a Jays uniform, putting up pretty good stats. He never asked to be traded, and wasn’t a malcontent. It’s not like Wells shots denied the Jays a playoff shot.

Peter Bourjos wrote his name in to the Halos record book. He became the first Angel with double digits in doubles, triples, home runs, and stolen bases. The sky’s the limit for this kid. Whether the Angels make the playoff or not, the rest of the AL West better watch out the next 10 years, or so.

Henderson Alvarez. Attorney? Cricket player? Mortgage broker? Nope, Toronto’s pitcher on Thursday. He allowed 3 runs to the Halos, but pretty much befuddled the Halos all night.

With Ervin Santana on the mound, I thought that would be enough for the Halos. It wasn’t. I blame Mike Scioscia a bit for this loss though. First Santana. Over his past 31.2 innings, Santana has walked 21 batters. That includes the 5 free passes to on Thursday. Since June 15th, Santana has been on an incredible run, so it’s not surprising that he might be winding down.

If you watched the game, you knew that Santana was done after 6 innings. Why Scioscia sent him back to the mound was beyond me, especially to pitch to Eric Thames. Thames has hit Santana hard, even hitting a home run off his in their first meeting. He did it again, hitting another home run cutting the Angels lead to 3-2. Takahashi should have started the inning, since 2 of the first 3 batters were left handed.

Didn’t happen, Bobby Cassevah relieved Santana, and gave away the game. Walking the first batter he faced, Jose Bautista, who eventually scored the tying run on a Cassevah wild pitch.

That seemed to take the air out of the Angels. Only 2 of their final 16 batters reached base from the 8th inning on. Even worse, their last 6 batters either hit it to the pitcher or first base. It is a tired team headed back to Anaheim.

Yes, I understand that Scioscia has no faith in the bullpen, but that just makes it even more amazing that the Angels have a shot at postseason.

When the Angels put in Garrett Richards, I said out loud, “The Angels better score 10 more runs if they wanna win”. They scored none, but Toronto did get the winner in the 12th.

After losing 4-3 in 12 innings, the Angels flight home is gonna be extra long. I think they’ll need to win all 6 at home to have any shot of making the playoffs.

Jered Weaver and Gio Gonzalez at the Stadium tomorrow night. Hope you all get out and cheer for the Halos as loud as you can.

Go Angels!

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